Articles Tagged with constitutional rights

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Charlotte Criminal Lawyer Brad Smith answers the question: “Should I talk to the police?”

As technology improves, it’s all but guaranteed that some enterprising criminal will find new ways to perpetrate crimes. After all, where there’s a will, it won’t be long until there’s a way. Though technological advancement has proven useful for those perpetrating crimes, it’s proven to be even more of a boon for those investigating criminal matters. Police have stayed several steps ahead of the courts, taking advantage of ambiguities in the law to use technology for their benefit.

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Charlotte Criminal Lawyer Brad Smith answers the question:”A past conviction is keeping me from finding work. What can I do?”

For many people, what goes on inside the walls of a prison isn’t the focus of much attention. Most seem content to embrace the idea that what’s out of sight should be kept out of mind. Unfortunately, this tendency to ignore sometimes-difficult issues allows the issues to continue to cause harm.

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Charlotte Criminal Lawyer Brad Smith answers the question: “Should I talk to the police?”

The man suspected of planting the bombs on the Jersey Shore and in Manhattan last month is being represented by attorneys for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) after being denied access to a federal public defender.

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Charlotte Criminal Lawyer Brad Smith answers the question: “Am I allowed to videotape an interaction with police? Can they make me stop filming?”

An important decision in a Georgia death penalty case was finally revealed after the Supreme Court spent more than seven months debating the matter. The High Court issued a 7-1 verdict reversing lower courts that had denied a death-row prisoner’s appeals based on racial bias. Though the man was not freed, the ruling does dramatically increase his chance at receiving a new, and hopefully fairer, trial.

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Charlotte DWI Lawyer Brad Smith answers : I was found not guilty of a charge, but my record still shows the charge

Just last week the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals tackled a subject that is becoming increasingly important in criminal investigations: cellphone records. Courts across the country often find themselves wrestling with issues related to cellphone record requests; weighing the benefits to law enforcement with the privacy interests of defendants.

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J. Bradley Smith of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Should I talk to the police?”

 

A recent United States Supreme Court has some legal observers complaining that police officers are entitled to mistakes of law, while ordinary citizens are not. The decision underlines, however, the ignorance many citizens have about their own rights under the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.

Handcuffs Mecklenburg Criminal Lawyer North Carolina DWI AttorneyAs Maynor Javier Vasquez drove a Ford Escort north a little before eight o’clock in the morning on April 29, 2009, on Interstate 77 in Dobson, North Carolina, Sergeant Matt Darisse of the Surry County Sheriff’s Department—who was observing northbound traffic—thought the Vasquez looked “stiff and nervous.”

Sgt. Darisse pulled out and followed Vasquez, ultimately signaling for him to pull the car over. After he pulled Vasquez over, Sgt. Darisse explained that as long as Vasquez’s license and registration checked out, he would be let off with a warning ticket. Sgt. Darisse had pulled Vasquez over, the officer explained, because one of the brake lights on the Ford Escort was out.

That one shuddered brake light became a pesky issue on the years of appeals that arose out of the encounter that began between Sgt. Darisse and Vasquez. In the end, the North Carolina state appellate courts agreed that the brake-light statute, using the language “a” stop lamp, only requires one working brake light on a motor vehicle.

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J. Bradley Smith of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “What is the difference between a misdemeanor and a felony?”

 

Like other criminal defense attorneys, I would almost never recommend that a defendant waive one’s right to a jury trial.

The Jury Charlotte Mecklenburg Criminal Lawyer North Carolina DWI AttorneyUntil last week, defendants in North Carolina could not be convicted of a felony but upon unanimous verdict of a jury of one’s peers. Now that right has been diluted, and criminal defendants have a new right: the right to waive their rights.

For the second time in two years, voters in the Tar Heel State have amended North Carolina’s State Constitution. Earlier this year, a pair of federal court judges struck down a 2012 state constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

This time around, voters in the Old North State narrowly passed a state constitutional amendment that will enable defendants in criminal superior matters to waive jury trials.

Article I, Section 24 of the Constitution of North Carolina will now read:

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