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.


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E.g., 06/17/2024
E.g., 06/17/2024

In this Vance County case, defendant appealed his convictions for attempted first-degree sexual offense with a child, statutory rape of a child, and indecent liberties with a child, arguing error in the denial of his motion to dismiss and the admission of testimony from several witnesses,...

State v. Ricks, ___ N.C. App. ___, ___ S.E.2d ___ (May. 5, 2020) rev’d in part on other grounds, ___ N.C. ___, 2021-NCSC-116 (Sep 24 2021)

The defendant was convicted in a jury trial of multiple counts of statutory rape of a child, statutory sex offense with a child, and taking indecent liberties with a child. The trial court sentenced the defendant to 300 to 420 months of imprisonment and ordered lifetime satellite-based...

(1) During closing statements to the jury, the prosecutor did not impermissibly comment on the defendant’s failure to take the stand. In context, the prosecutor’s statements summarized the evidence before the jury and asserted that no evidence was presented to support defense counsel’s...

In this sexual assault trial, the prosecutor’s comment during closing argument was not a comment on the defendant’s failure to testify. The prosecutor stated: “There are only two people in this courtroom as we sit here today that actually know what happened between the two people, and that’s [...

State v. Foust, 220 N.C. App. 63 (Apr. 17, 2012)

The prosecutor did not improperly refer to the defendant’s failure to testify but rather properly commented on the defendant’s failure contradict or challenge the State’s evidence.

The prosecutor did not improperly comment on the defendant’s failure to testify by pointing out to the jury in closing that the defense had not put on any mental health evidence as forecasted in its opening statement; however, the court disapproved of the prosecutor’s statement that this...

The prosecutor’s comments during closing did not constitute a reference to the defendant’s failure to testify; the comments responded to direct attacks on the State’s witnesses and pertained to the defendant’s failure to produce witnesses or exculpatory evidence.

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