Smith's Criminal Case Compendium

Smith's Criminal Case Compendium


This compendium includes significant criminal cases by the U.S. Supreme Court & N.C. appellate courts, Nov. 2008 – Present. Selected 4th Circuit cases also are included.

Jessica Smith prepared case summaries Nov. 2008-June 4, 2019; later summaries are prepared by other School staff.


Navigate using the table of contents to the left or by using the search box below. Use quotations for an exact phrase search. A search for multiple terms without quotations functions as an “or” search. Not sure where to start? The 5 minute video tutorial offers a guided tour of main features – Launch Tutorial (opens in new tab).

E.g., 07/20/2024
E.g., 07/20/2024

The evidence was sufficient to support a conviction for possession of stolen property. The defendant challenged only the sufficiency of the evidence that he knew or had reasonable grounds to believe that the items were stolen. Here, the defendant had possession of stolen property valued at more than $1,000, which he sold for only $114; although the defendant told a detective that he obtained the stolen property from a “white man,” he could not provide the man’s name; and the defendant did not specifically tell the detective that he bought the items from this unidentified man and he did not produce a receipt.

The court held that there was sufficient evidence to sustain the defendant’s conviction for possession of a stolen vehicle, rejecting the defendant’s argument that he did not have reason to believe the vehicle was stolen, in part because the defendant’s own statements indicated otherwise.

In a possession of stolen goods case, the evidence was insufficient to establish that the defendant knew that the item at issue, a four-wheeler, was stolen. Distinguishing State v. Lofton, 66 N.C. App. 79 (1984), the court noted, among other things, that the cosmetic changes to the four-wheeler were minimal,the defendant openly drove the four-wheeler, and the defendant did not flee from police. Additionally, there was no evidence regarding how the defendant got possession of the four-wheeler.

The evidence was insufficient to establish that the defendant knew a gun was stolen. Case law establishes that guilty knowledge can be inferred from the act of throwing away a stolen weapon. In this case, shortly after a robbery, the defendant and an accomplice went to the home of the accomplice’s mother, put the gun in her bedroom, and left the house. These actions were not analogous to throwing an item away for purposes of inferring knowledge that an item was stolen.

Show Table of Contents