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.

Instructions

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E.g., 10/19/2021
E.g., 10/19/2021

Officers investigating complaints of drug activity at a home where the defendant lived with several others discovered methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine in a small yellow tin in a dresser in the alcove near defendant’s bedroom, an area that the defendant claimed as his personal space....

In this juvenile case, the trial court erred by denying the respondent’s motions to dismiss charges of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor and first-degree forcible sexual offense but did not err by accepting his admission of attempted larceny in an incident unrelated to the...

State v. Waring, 364 N.C. 443 (Nov. 5, 2010)

In a capital case involving two perpetrators, the court rejected the defendant’s argument that the State should have been obligated to prove that the defendant himself had the requisite intent. The trial court properly instructed on acting in concert with respect to the murder charge, in...

A longstanding feud and several prior altercations culminated in the defendant and an accomplice ambushing two victims as they were driving away from the home of a woman who helped set the victims up. As the victims’ vehicle left the woman’s home and approached an intersection, the...

(1) In this murder case, the trial court did not err by instructing the jury on the doctrine of acting in concert where there was evidence that the defendant and another man met together at a store, discussed with the defendant’s brother that the victim owed the brother money, received...

The defendant, the former District Attorney for Person and Caldwell Counties, was tried for obtaining property by false pretenses, conspiracy to obtain property by false pretenses, aiding and abetting obtaining property by false pretenses, three counts of obstruction of justice, and failure to...

(1) The trial court properly denied the defendant’s motion to dismiss a charge of armed robbery where the evidence showed that he acted in concert with the perpetrator. Although the defendant was not identified as being at the crime scene, it would have been reasonable for the jury to infer that...

State v. Bennett, ___ N.C. App. ___, 821 S.E.2d 476 (Oct. 16, 2018) rev’d on other grounds, ___ N.C. ___, ___ S.E.2d ___ (Jun 5 2020)

In this drug case, the trial court rejected the defendant’s argument that the evidence was insufficient to support an acting in concert instruction. Reviewing the evidence, the court rejected the defendant’s argument that it showed only mere presence.

(1) In this habitual misdemeanor larceny case, the court rejected the defendant’s argument that the trial court created a fatal variance when it instructed the jury on a theory of acting in concert not alleged in the indictment. Citing prior case law, the court held that the theory of acting in...

The evidence was sufficient to sustain a charge of assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury based on a theory of acting in concert. It was undisputed that the victim sustained serious injury; the only real issue was whether the evidence was sufficient to allow a reasonable...

In this drug case, the trial court committed plain error by instructing the jury on the theory of acting in concert. The State presented no evidence that the defendant had a common plan or purpose to possess the contraband with his alleged accomplice, McEntire. At most, the evidence showed that...

Reversing the defendant’s convictions for contaminating a public water system, the court held that because the defendant was not constructively present, the evidence was insufficient to support criminal liability under the doctrine of acting in concert. The evidence showed that the defendant...

The evidence was sufficient to support convictions for murder, burglary, and armed robbery on theories of acting in concert and aiding and abetting. The court noted that neither acting in concert nor aiding and abetting require a defendant to expressly vocalize her assent to the criminal conduct...

State v. Rowe, 231 N.C. App. 462 (Dec. 17, 2013)

In an assault inflicting serious injury case, the evidence was sufficient to show that the defendant acted in concert with other assailants and thus that he was guilty of the offense even if the injuries he personally inflicted did not constitute “serious injury.”

State v. Facyson, 227 N.C. App. 576 (June 4, 2013) rev’d on other grounds, 367 N.C. 454 (Jun 12 2014)

The evidence was sufficient to show that the defendant committed second-degree murder either alone or in concert with others. The defendant was present with two men who borrowed a red Ford from David Andrews. The three men did not return the car to Andrews and the defendant was later seen...

In a case involving charges of obtaining property by false pretenses arising out of sales to a pawn shop in which another person told the shop that the items were not stolen, the evidence was insufficient to show that the defendant was acting in concert. Assuming that the State sufficiently...

In a kidnapping and armed robbery case the evidence was sufficient that the defendant acted in concert with an accomplice. Although the defendant argued that the evidence established that he was merely present at the scene, the evidence showed that he aided his co-conspirator.

The trial court did not err by dismissing charges of felony breaking or entering and felony larceny. The State presented evidence that an unknown man, who appeared to be concealing his identity, was seen walking around the victim’s yard carrying property later determined to have been taken from...

The evidence was sufficient to support a conviction of armed robbery under an acting in concert theory. Although the record did not reveal whether the defendant shared the intent or purpose to use a dangerous weapon during the robbery, this was not a necessary element under the theory of acting...

In a case in which there was a dissenting opinion, the court held that there was sufficient evidence that the defendant acted in concert with another to commit a robbery. The evidence showed that he was not present at the ATM where the money was taken, but was parked nearby in a getaway vehicle...

There was sufficient evidence of acting in concert with respect to a murder and felony assault, notwithstanding the defendant’s exculpatory statement that he “got caught in the middle” of the events in question. Other evidence permitted a reasonable inference that the defendant and an accomplice...

The court rejected the defendant’s argument that to convict of burglary by acting in concert the State was required to show that the defendant had the specific intent that one of her accomplices would assault the victim with deadly weapon. The State’s evidence, showing that the defendant...

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