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Charlotte NC Criminal Defense Law Blog

Innocent yet behind bars: reportedly, far from an anomaly

How many people languishing in jails and prisons in North Carolina and nationally are innocent of the crimes they were charged with?

One prominent advocacy group points to a collection of studies estimating that as many as 5 percent of the people incarcerated in the United States are wrongfully behind bars.

Possession of Firearm at Charlotte Airport

In a gun-friendly culture such as in The South, it is unfortunately common for otherwise responsible gun owners to leave a weapon in their luggage that they then take to the airport. When the weapon is found by TSA, these folks find themselves getting charged and even arrested & put in jail. These charges are serious and can result in a criminal record, loss of CCW or gun purchase permits, etc..

Police interrogation: no, they're not focued on your best interests

We ask readers in today's post whether they think they can reasonably infer something about a police interrogation where a suspect who is persistently questioned and challenged without the assistance of legal counsel for six hours by investigators ultimately confesses to the rape and slaying of a neighbor ... and then asks if he is free to leave for a scheduled camping trip with his family.

Oh, and there's one other piece of relevant information regarding that interrogation, as noted in a media article on the link between certain interrogation techniques and false confessions uttered by mentally challenged suspects, namely this: the questioned party reportedly never offered any evidence of the crime that wasn't first passed along to him by the very people interrogating him. In other words, he lacked so-called "guilty knowledge" of the rape and killing.

Traffic tickets: Pay or challenge?

Drivers everywhere, every single day get pulled over for speeding or other moving violations and are ticketed.

Many simply pay the ticket and move on. After all, the officer just told them it was the wisest move. But is it? Should people always just pay their traffic tickets without thinking twice?

No, and here's why.

Domestic abuse: the role of an experienced criminal defense attorney

Maybe it didn't really happen that way. Perhaps the "facts" were twisted, with authorities too quickly jumping on the bandwagon of a perceived victim who is actually -- through calculating and manipulative behavior -- a victimizer. Maybe police and prosecutors are being unfairly influenced by immediate perceptions based on sexual stereotypes.

Such is the realm of domestic violence, an always volatile area of the law that is sometimes rendered even murkier by the inability of examiners to probe with real accuracy and impartiality into the details of allegations surrounding alleged acts of abuse.

When are Mecklenburg Courts closed for inclement weather?

People often ask if Mecklenburg courts will be closed due to inclement weather. The court policy is to follow Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools for the first day of such weather. So if CMS is closed, the courts are closed. If CMS is delayed, the courts are delayed. (Note that this applies to the STATE court in Mecklenburg County; the Federal court has its own policy.) 

Domestic Violence cases and Fabricated Evidence

The potential for evidence to be fabricated by an unstable and vindictive "victim" is all too frequent, especially in Domestic Violence cases where it is a "he said, she said" courtroom scenario.This case is a classic example. Allegations that the "victim" suffered mental health problems, had possibly falsely reported other incidents and even fabricated illnesses, etc , are all ripe fodder for cross examination by an experienced lawyer.

Considerations on North Carolina theft crimes, Part 2

We noted in our immediately preceding blog post (please see our January 8 entry) that a criminal theft charge appearing fairly straightforward on first appearance might actually entail material ambiguity -- even flat-out uncertainty -- on a number of fronts.

Given that ready potential in any given case, we point out in that post from last week that "an experienced criminal defense attorney may find one or more material weaknesses" in a theft-based prosecution against a client.

North Carolina theft crimes: wide-ranging, serious consequences

Although many members of the general public in North Carolina and elsewhere might feel comfortable to collectively lump together all forms of illicit property taking as "stealing," that is a term that is often regarded as being somewhat generic under federal and state laws.

As such, it can undergo much tweaking and modification in a manner that can understandably confuse individuals outside the legal profession who don't routinely focus upon theft-related crimes and nomenclature.

Meet the Office Mascots

  • Sir Winston Churchill Connelly is a red Labradoodle bred from a mahogany miniature French Poodle and a red English Lab. He is doted upon by staff and clients alike, stealing their hearts with his sweet disposition. More Photos

  • Dustye is a gaited (also known as racking) Registered Tennessee Walking Horse. He is a sweet tempered, playful, noble buckskin who loves to give rides to kids. More Photos