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Charlotte is on track to set a new homicide record in 2019.

While quite a dubious distinction in and of itself, the developing metric fails to express the full nature and extent of a much larger problem in Mecklenburg County.

The overall crime rate and criminality are on the verge of becoming all-consuming issues for citizens, politicians, and the media in our beloved, friendly southern town.

Have an upcoming court appearance?

A lot of people don’t have experience with legal matters.  As such, it’s understandable you may not know what to expect, what to do, or how to act in court.  That’s normal.

Two of the most common questions we get is, “What should I expect in court?” and “What should I wear?”

News outlets continue to report a spate of DUI wrecks in the Carolinas.  Contrary to the narrative spun by senior law enforcement officials, ride-sharing apps like UBER and Lyft have not eliminated the dangers of alcohol-related wrecks and deaths in Charlotte.

Drunk driving fatalities have increased while the number of arrests and criminal charges have dropped, if not fallen off the cliff.

That’s not something you just “notice” without taking affirmative steps to remedy the problem.  Enforcing the NC DWI laws is not a priority to senior leadership at CMPD.

Battle with AddictionLet’s call him Andrew.  We spent some time together last week.  Quick to smile, self-deprecating, and genuinely appreciative as a client, I’ve liked him from the start.

I could immediately see Andrew was agitated, but most people wouldn’t have picked up on that. I gave him the head nod and we silently walked out of the courtroom and into the hallway to talk.

Andrew didn’t start this conversation with his usual smile.  He was polite as ever, immediately apologizing for the purpose of our being there.  This time, things were different.

Brady and Giglio Material – Transparency in Motion for Discovery in NC

Brady RuleThe following legal reference materials are in addition to those previously posted by our law firm.  While discovery materials pursuant to Brady v. Maryland supplement the NC criminal laws relevant to voluntary discovery or a Motion for Discovery, they are technically distinct from the State providing Giglio content.

One way to think of it is that, generally speaking, all Giglio v. United States content likely falls within the Brady Rule, but not all Brady materials are Giglio disclosures.  Brady has to do with the voluntary disclosure of favorable information that may be exculpatory in nature.

The State of North Carolina (through the prosecutors) is required to turn over certain types of evidence to the accused (the Defendant in NC).  Criminal lawyers in Charlotte, and other attorneys throughout the state, often refer to that as Giglio or exculpatory Brady material. 

Both Brady and Giglio, and the associated release of documentation, are related to one another, at least in part.  Neither is strictly what may you think of as a Motion for Discovery or N.C.G.S. 15A-903, the NC discovery law.Motion for Discovery

It’s more than that.  Prosecutors have enhanced duties to provide certain materials pursuant to ethical responsibilities and constitutional precepts.

Personal Injury Lawyers in Charlotte North CarolinaThe likelihood of accidents involving alcohol, permanent injuries, and wrongful death claims associated with drunk driving in Charlotte continues to increase at a disturbing rate.  The numbers don’t lie.

There is an inverse relationship between drunken driving arrests and “accidents.”  Put simply, alcohol-related fatalities (wrecks) increase as DWI arrests decrease.

DWI enforcement in Mecklenburg County has dropped substantially in recent years.  Arrests for drunk driving have declined by nearly 2/3rds, with 4,101 arrests in 2003 and only 1,415 Mecklenburg DWI arrests in 2018.

What is a 50B in NCCommunicating threats, assault, stalking, and other felony charges in North Carolina, if categorized as domestic violence, are clearly serious.  If arrested, the terms and conditions of release may result in no way to immediately bond out, at least for a couple of days.

That’s because, under the NC Criminal Laws, crimes of domestic violence require pre-trial release and bail be determined by a district court judge.  Unlike many other legal matters, including many if not most felony charges, a magistrate is not authorized to set bond or otherwise address the conditions of release for DV cases.

Even with no prior record, you may find youself in jail for a period of time until a judge is available.  That’s tough. The statute is written such that, unless the particular jursidiction can fast-track DV court appearances, people sit in jail with no way to get out for a substantial period of time- Bill Powers, Criminal Defense Lawyer Charlotte NC 

Is Court Closed in Charlotte?Inclement weather in the Carolinas can make for anxious times.  It’s more than just black ice and downed trees.  If you have court appearance coming up, wondering what to do can be a problem.   

Check out the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Court Closing Policy here.

The local Court Closing rule recommends you call the Mecklenburg County Emergency Announcement Line at  704-686-0289

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