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., 10/26/2021
E.g., 10/26/2021
State v Walston, 367 N.C. 721 (Dec. 19, 2014)

Based on long-standing precedent, the trial court’s use of the term “victim” in the jury instructions was not impermissible commentary on a disputed issue of fact and the trial court did not err by denying the defendant’s request to use the words “alleged victim” instead of “victim” in the jury...

In this Moore County case, the defendant was convicted of first-degree rape and sex offense, crime against nature, possession of firearm by felon, communicating threats and various assaults stemming from attacks on his estranged then-wife. On appeal, the defendant argued that the trial court...

In this sexual assault case, no plain error occurred when the trial court referred to the complaining witness as “the victim” in the jury instructions. It is well-settled that when a judge properly places the burden of proof on the State, referring to the complaining witness as “the victim” does...

State v. Davis, 239 N.C. App. 522 (Mar. 3, 2015) modified and affirmed on other grounds, 368 N.C. 794 (Apr 15 2016)

Citing State v. Walston, 367 N.C. 721 (Dec. 19, 2014), the court held in this child sexual assault case that the trial court did not commit reversible error by using the word “victim” in the jury instructions. 

In this child sexual abuse case, the trial court did not err by referring to the victim as the “alleged victim” in its opening remarks to the jury and referring to her as “the victim” in its final jury instructions. The court distinguished State v. Walston, 229 N.C. App. 141 (2013),...

No plain error occurred in a sexual assault case where the trial court referred to “the victim” in its jury instructions.

In this child sex case, the trial court did not commit plain error by using the word “victim” in the jury instructions. The court distinguished State v. Walston, 229 N.C. App. 141 (2013) (trial court’s use of the term “victim” in jury instructions was prejudicial error), rev’d...

The court rejected the defendant’s argument that by using the phrase “the victim” while instructing the jury the trial court expressed an opinion regarding a fact in violation of G.S. 15A-1232; the court found that the defendant failed to show prejudice.

In a sexual assault case, the trial court did not err by using the word “victim” in the jury instructions. Use of this word did not constitute an opinion by the trial court regarding guilt and caused no prejudice.

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