State v. Pierce, 238 N.C. App. 141 (Dec. 16, 2014)

(1) In a failing to register case the indictment was not defective. The indictment alleged that the defendant failed to provide 10 days of written notice of his change of address to “the last registering sheriff by failing to report his change of address to the Wilkes County Sheriff’s Office.” The defendant allegedly moved from Burke to Wilkes County. The court rejected the defendant’s argument that the indictment was fatally defective for not alleging that he failed to provide “in-person” notice. It reasoned that the defendant was not prosecuted for failing to make an “in person” notification, but rather for failing to give 10 days of written notice, which by itself is a violation of the statute. The court also rejected the defendant’s argument that an error in the indictment indicating that the Wilkes County Sheriff’s Office was the “the last registering sheriff” (in fact the last registering sheriff was the Burke County sheriff), invalidated the indictment. (2) The trial court did not err by allowing the State to amend the indictment and expand the dates of offense from 7 November 2012 to June to November 2012. It reasoned that the amendment did not substantially alter the charge “because the specific date that defendant moved to Wilkes County was not an essential element of the crime.”