Smith's Criminal Case Compendium

Smith's Criminal Case Compendium

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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.

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E.g., 11/27/2021
E.g., 11/27/2021

The trial court erred in its jury instructions for the crime of impersonating an officer under G.S. 14-277(b). The court noted that while G.S. 14-277(a) makes it a crime for an individual to make a false representation to another person that he is a sworn law enforcement officer, G.S. 14-277(b) makes it a crime for an individual, while falsely representing to another that he is a sworn law enforcement officer, to carry out any act in accordance with the authority granted to a law enforcement officer. Accordingly, the court concluded, a charge under G.S. 14-277(b) includes all of the elements of a charge under G.S. 14-277(a). The court further concluded that while NCPJI – Crim. 230.70 correctly charges an offense under G.S. 14-277(a), NCPJI – Criminal 230.75 “inadequately guides the trial court regarding the elements of [an offense under G.S. 14-277(b)] . . . by omitting from the instruction the ways enumerated in [G.S. 14-277(a)] and N.C.P.I. – Crim. 230-70 by which an individual may falsely represent to another that he is a sworn law enforcement officer.” The trial court’s instructions based on this pattern instruction were error, however the error was harmless.

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