How can I get my North Carolina criminal case dismissed?
There's no sure fire was to get a North Carolina criminal case dismissed. One great way to get a case dismissed is to take a very careful look look at the charging document. There are a handful of different things that could be wrong with your citation, magistrate's order, criminal summons, arrest warrant or statement of charges. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel can review your charging documents and let you know if there was a mistake that could lead to a dismissal.
Here's a good example by way of a run of the mille larceny or shoplifting case. By law the North Carolina charging document must identify the owner of the property stolen. Very often the business who owns the property will be listed by their name instead of the name of the legal entity capable of owning property in North Carolina. This is an important legal distinction and one that is very often not included in the charging document.
A bill of indictment is fatally defective if it does not allege that an incorporated legal entity is a corporation or the name of the legal entity does not import that it is a corporation. The owner of the property in question is an essential element in a larceny case. If the owner is not properly identified the case must be dismissed.
The best known example is where an indictment in a larceny case was fatally defective because it listed the owner of the property as “Faith Temple Church of God” instead of “Faith Temple Church-High Point, Incorporated.”
More commonly a charging document might list “Wal Mart” as the owner of the property stolen instead of “Wal Mart Incorporated, a legal entity capable of owning property in the State of North Carolina.”
Generally this specific example is a temporary fix in the case of a larceny or shoplifting case. The District Attorney's Office could go back and file new charges against you listing the correct legal entity. But there's always a chance they would not go back to file new charges. At the very least this legal move could save you several months while the DA goes back to start from scratch with new charges.
The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel serves clients in Wake, Durham, Chatham and Orange Counties. The cases mentioned above are just examples and there is no one size fits all approach to getting a case dismissed. If you are charged with a crime and have questions about your charging document (and whether a mistake could lead to a dismissal) we offer free consultations to discuss your case.