Criminal Lawyer for North Carolina State University Students

October 31, 2011 by  
Filed under Criminal Law

Criminal Lawyer for North Carolina State University Students

It is sadly common for college age kids to be charged with criminal offense during their time at school.  The Gurney Law Firm offers criminal representation to students from all the universities in the Triangle and eastern North Carolina.  That includes students from NC State, Duke, UNC, Peace College, Meredith, Wake Tech, ECU and every university in between.

The most common charges students pick up are alcohol and drug related misdemeanors.  That includes DWI, underage drinking, simple possession of marijuana and the use of false or fake ID.  Also, alcohol / Bar related fights can bring charges of Assault, Simple Affray, and Injury to Personal Property.   Less often students will be charged with serious felony charges.  These are usually felony drug charges.

If you are a student and have been charged with a criminal offense I urge you to contact a criminal lawyer in Raleigh.  The Gurney Law Firm handles all types of Misdemeanor and Felonies in Raleigh, Wake County and the Triangle.   We also help in getting your NC criminal record expunged.  This is very important for young people and students because a criminal record may negatively affect your future employment and graduate school.

Speeding Ticket Quotas in North Carolina… G.S. 20-187.3?

October 26, 2011 by  
Filed under Traffic Law

Speeding Ticket Quotas in North Carolina… G.S. 20-187.3?

 

After receiving a speeding ticket in Raleigh, a woman wondered to herself, “Why didn’t the officer just cut her a break and give her a warning?  Why did the officer feel he needed to give her a speeding ticket?  Do police officers in Wake County have a certain quota of tickets they have to give out each month? ”

A recent posting on the UNC School of government took a look at the legality of quotas of this kind and concluded that “the use of quotas for officers doesn’t seem to be widespread.”  Also, a poll conducted by the National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS) showed that police seem not to use speeding ticket quotas.

In some states they have specific statutes that outlaw the use of traffic ticket quotas and other quotas for criminal charges.  North Carolina does not have a general anti-quota statute.  However, there is a North Carolina General Statute that does specifically prohibit the North Carolina State Highway Patrol
for using speeding ticket quotas.  It can be found at G.S. 20-187.3 and it provides that “[t]he Secretary of Crime Control and Public Safety shall not make or permit to be made any order, rule, or regulation requiring the issuance of any minimum number of traffic citations, or ticket quotas, by any member or members of the State Highway Patrol. Pay and promotions of members of the Highway Patrol shall be based on their overall job performance and not on the basis of the volume of citations issued or arrests made.”

After talking to police offers in Raleigh and Wake County I feel that the general use of quotas are not being used.

If you or someone you know has been charged with a Wake County Speeding ticket or a Raleigh traffic ticket I urge you to call The Gurney Law Firm at (919) 930-4027.  Mr. Gurney is a Raleigh criminal defense lawyer.  The Gurney Law Firm serves all of Wake County including Raleigh, Durham, Apex, Cary, Wake Forest, Rolesville, Zebulon, Holly Springs, Garner, Morrisville, Wendell, Knightdale and Fuquay-Varina.

Death Penalty Losing Support?

October 25, 2011 by  
Filed under Criminal Law

Death Penalty Losing Support?

A new Gallup Poll shows that support for using the death penalty in cases of murder is down to 61%.  That is a 3% drop in support from last year.  The poll shows this is the lowest level of support since 1972, the year the Supreme Court voided all existing state death penalty laws in Furman v. Georgia.

Support rose to its highest levels from the mid-1980s through the mid-1990s,  including the all-time high of 80% who favored the death penalty in 1994.  But since that high there has been a marked decline of 19% over the past 17 years, and a 3-point drop from last year’s measure.

Gallup reports “The Oct. 6-9 poll was conducted shortly after the execution of Troy Davis in Georgia, which generated widespread protests and extensive news coverage. This could help explain the slight drop in support for the death penalty this year. However, there have been high-profile executions in the news in previous years without concomitant drops in death penalty support, making it less clear that such events have a direct impact on attitudes.”

The poll also shows that people in the South and Mid-West support the death penalty more than in the rest of the country.

If you have been charged with a crime in North Carolina I urge you to contact Criminal Defense Lawyer Eric Gurney at (919) 930-4027.

The SBI Crime Lab Gets New Director

October 25, 2011 by  
Filed under Criminal Law

The SBI Crime Lab Gets New Director

Criminal defense attorneys around the state of North Carolina are breathing a little easier after the SBI crime lab named a new director.
The new man in charge is former Greensboro judge Joe Johns.  He has no science background, but has drawn high praise for his management skills over the last year as interim director.  He was appointed by North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper and SBI director Greg McLeod.

The News and Observer reported that the previous director, Jerry Richardson, was removed from the position last year after a range of questions about the lab’s work in criminal cases.  Richardson did not have a science background and had struggled to explain lab policies during the scrutiny last year.

The SBI Crime Lab came under fire when two former FBI officials wrote an audit that flagged more than 200 cases in which the lab’s reporting of tests was in question.

As a Criminal defense attorney in Raleigh, NC, I cannot state how glad I am to see the SBI Crime Lab take such a positive turn.  It seemed to
be a real blow to the State of North Carolina and the judicial system when all these initial concerns about integrity of the lab were brought up.

If you have a case that involves the SBI crime lab contact Raleigh criminal defense lawyer Eric Gurney at (919) 930-4027.

50% of Americans Now Favor Legalizing Marijuana

October 24, 2011 by  
Filed under Criminal Law

50% of Americans Now Favor Legalizing Marijuana

Should Marijuana be made legal, or not?

Support for the legalization of Marijuana has reached an all time high.  According to a poll, recently published, more Americans are now in support of legalizing the drug than those opposed.   The poll shows that a record high of 50% of Americans are in favor of the legalization of marijuana.   That is up from 46% last year.

When Americans were first polled in 1969, a mere 12% were in favor of legalization.  That support rose to over 30% in 2000 and 40%
in 2009.  This October, the same poll has shown that a record high 50% of Americans favor legalizing Marijuana.

With growing support for the legalization of marijuana, pressure may build to bring laws in compliance with the people’s wishes and many states have done just that.  To date, 16 states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana for medical use and many states have passed laws which decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.

But it is still a crime in North Carolina to possess, smoke, buy or sell marijuana.  It is also illegal to possess drug paraphernalia
such as bongs, smoking pipes or rolling papers that are used for marijuana.

If you have been charged with a drug offense I urge you to call The Gurney Law Firm.  Mr. Gurney is a criminal defense attorney in Raleigh and handles all types of drug offenses.  Mr. Gurney is a former Wake County Magistrate and has handled thousands of criminal cases.  This includes drug related arrests, search warrants and bond hearings in Wake County, North Carolina.

Talk to a Raleigh criminal defense lawyer now at (919) 930-4027.

Traffic Attorney in Raleigh

October 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Traffic Law

Traffic Attorney in Raleigh

If you got a traffic ticket or DWI in Raleigh, Wake Forest, Garner, Apex, and Cary or anywhere in Wake County you should contact The Gurney Law Firm at (919) 930-4027.  Traffic offenses are the most common charge given by police… But they have serious consequences if they are not handled properly.

A simple wake county speeding ticket can seriously raise your car insurance rate.  A DWI is even worse.  It is important to work with a traffic attorney in Raleigh.  Being found guilty on a traffic offense can cause your insurance to go up between 25% and 400%.

If you have been charged with a traffic offense in WakeCounty I urge you to contact The Gurney Law Firm at (919) 930-4027.  Mr. Gurney is a traffic attorney in Raleigh and is available to talk to you about your case.

Will My Mug Shot be in “The Slammer?”

October 21, 2011 by  
Filed under Criminal Law

If I get arrested will my mug shot be in “The Slammer?”

This is a question I hear a lot as a criminal defense attorney in Raleigh.  I heard it even more in my previous career as a Wake County Magistrate.  I always give the same answer…. “Maybe.”

Unfortunately this answer usually does not satisfy the person asking it.  But it is the right answer.  And it might not seem fair to the  person whose face will be plastered in stores around Raleigh.  “It’s not fair” I remember one arrestee telling me, “I am innocent of the charges I have been arrested for and now this embarrassing picture of me will be all over the place!”

Well, technically the image is public record and is available to the public through different law enforcement agencies.   The Slammer gets it mug shot from the City-County Bureau of Identification who processes all of the arrestees in Wake County.

For those of you who are not familiar with the “Slammer,” let me see if I can explain.  Basically it is a weekly publication filled with mug shots of people that have been arrested and little article on crime.  It is available in Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, North Carolina (Raleigh / Triangle Area and Mecklenburg Co.), Ohio, Kansas and Texas.  A new issue comes out every Friday and is sold in convince stores in the stated markets.

Around Raleigh you can find The Slammer at most gas stations and convince stores.  Many people have mixed feelings about The Slammer.  Some feel it is in bad taste and others think it is a great service to the community.  The magazine states that “The Slammer‘s mission is to help reduce crime, locate missing persons, bring fugitives to justice and provide information that assists authorities in making our communities safer.”

If you are arrested in Raleigh or the Triangle… there is a chance
you mug shot will be in “The Slammer.”

New Law Affects Teen Drivers in NC – G.S. 20-13.3

October 18, 2011 by  
Filed under Traffic Law

New Law Affects Teen Drivers in NC – G.S. 20-13.3

Tell your teen driver to slow down!   It could cost them big after the New Year.  The UNC School of Government reports that:  On January 1st, 2012 the new law on Civil License Revocations for Provisional Licensees goes into effect.  It’s a scary law that can land a teen driver in jail and result in a 30 day suspended license for speeding 15 mph over the posted speed limit (among numerous other moving violation).

The newly amended law, G.S. 20-13.3, will affect 16 and 17 year old drivers that have been issued a limited learner’s permit or a provisional license issued by NC DMV pursuant to G.S. 20-11. These drivers are defined as “provisional licensee[s].” G.S. 20-13.3(a)(4).  This new law does not affect 15 year old drivers that have been issued Provisional Licenses because under North Carolina state law someone under the age of 16 cannot be arrested.

The new law is activated by commission of a “criminal moving violation,” which are driving offenses that are punishable as a misdemeanor or felony offense.  This includes Reckless driving (G.S. 20-140) and Speeding more than 15 mph over limit or more than 80 mph (G.S. 20-141(j1))… Both of which are not uncommon for teens to be charged with.

Please see the end of this article for a complete list of criminal moving violations.

Under the new law a provisional licensee’s permit or license is subject to revocation under G.S. 13-3 if: (1) a law enforcement officer has reasonable grounds to believe that the provisional licensee has committed a criminal moving violation, (2) the provisional licensee is charged with that offense, and (3) the provisional licensee is not subject to a civil revocation pursuant to G.S. 20-16.5 for the same underlying conduct.

Bottom Line – If your teen speeds they risk license revocation and jail!  Contact The Gurney Law Firm if you or your teen has been charge with a traffic or criminal offense (919) 930-4027.  Mr. Gurney is a criminal defense attorney in Raleigh, NC and serves Raleigh, Cary, Garner, Apex, Wake Forest and all of Wake County.

The following offenses are criminal moving violations in North Carolina:

  • G.S. 20-137.4: Operating a school bus while using a mobile phone
  • G.S. 20-137.4A: Operating a school bus while using a mobile phone to text or access electronic email
  • G.S. 20-138.1: Driving while impaired
  • G.S. 20-138.2: Driving while impaired in a commercial vehicle
  • G.S. 20-138.2A: Operating a commercial vehicle after consuming
  • G.S. 20-138.2B: Operating a school bus, school activity bus, or child care vehicle after consuming alcohol
  • G.S. 20-138.3: Operating a motor vehicle by person less than 21 after consuming alcohol or drugs
  • G.S. 20-138.5: Habitual impaired driving
  • G.S. 20-138.7(a): Operating a motor vehicle while there is an open container of alcohol in the passenger area and while the driver is consuming or has consumed alcohol
  • G.S. 20-140: Reckless driving
  • G.S. 20-141(j1): Speeding more than 15 mph over limit or more than 80 mph
  • G.S. 20-141(j3): Speeding in a commercial motor vehicle carrying a load that is subject to the permitting requirements of G.S. 20-119 and (i) driving 15 mph or more over the posted speed, or (ii) driving 15 mph or more over the permit speed
  • G.S. 20-141.3: Operating a motor vehicle willfully in a prearranged speed competition, or operating a motor vehicle willfully in speed competition, or allowing one’s vehicle to be operated in a prearranged speed competition, or wagering on a prearranged speed competition
  • G.S. 20-141.4: Felony death by vehicle, misdemeanor death by vehicle, felony serious injury by vehicle, aggravated felony serious injury by vehicle, aggravated felony death by vehicle, repeat felony death by vehicle
  • G.S. 20-141.5: Speeding to elude arrest
  • G.S. 20-141.6: Aggressive driving
  • G.S. 20-149(b): Improper operation by an overtaken driver causing a collision resulting in serious bodily injury, bodily injury, or property damage
  • G.S. 20-157(a), (h), (i): Failing to move over for law enforcement or emergency vehicle giving warning signal, or violating G.S. 20-157 and causing damage to property or injury, or violating G.S. 20-157 and causing serious injury or death
  • G.S.20-166(a), (a1), (b), (c), (c1): Failing to stop and remain after a crash resulting in serious bodily injury or death, or failing to stop and remain after a crash resulting in injury, or failing to provide information or render assistance following a crash, or failing to stop and remain after a crash resulting in damage to property or non-apparent injury
  • G.S. 20-166.1: Failing to notify law enforcement or other owner following crash, or failing to provide proof of insurance to DMV upon request
  • G.S. 20-166.2: Failing, when a passenger in a vehicle involved in a crash, to remain at the scene, or provide information, or render assistance
  • G.S. 20-167.1: Transporting spent nuclear fuel without notifying NCSHP in advance

 

Fight Your Speeding Ticket

October 17, 2011 by  
Filed under Traffic Law

Pretty much everyone I know has received a speeding ticket at some point in their life. Speeding tickets in Wake County are very common and happen to people in all walks f life.  But what do you do if you get one? A simple speeding ticket can end up costing you a lot if it’s not handled correctly.Your first step should be to consult an attorney who handles traffic law.  Here at The Gurney Law Firm we handle Wake County traffic tickets with due diligence and understanding.  It is important to understand the impact traffic tickets can have on your license and your insurance.

Contact The Gurney Law Firm if you have received a speeding ticket or DWI in Wake County and let us help.  The Gurney Law Firm serves all of Wake County including Raleigh, Durham, Apex, Cary, Wake Forest, Rolesville, Zebulon, Holly Springs, Garner, Morrisville, Wendell, Knightdale and Fuquay-Varina.

The Gurney Law Firm has experience with Traffic Violations, Speeding Tickets and Moving Violations. Let us fight and negotiate for you to minimize your exposure to license and insurance points. In many traffic cases we can represent you in court without you having to appear.

  • Speeding Tickets
  • Careless and Reckless Driving
  • DWI / DUI
  • Failure to Change Address
  • Expired or No Registration
  • DMV Hearings
  • Limited Driving Privilege
  • Driving While License Revoked
  • No Operator’s License
  • Failure to Wear a Seatbelt
  • Speeding
  • Speeding in a Work Zone
  • Speeding in a School Zone
  • Fail to Avoid Accident
  • Prayer for Judgment
  • All Other Traffic Charges

It is worth your time and money to contact an attorney.  Let us know if you we can help (919) 930-4027.

DWI Check Points in Raleigh and Wake County

October 17, 2011 by  
Filed under Traffic Law

DWI Check Points in Raleigh and Wake County

The headlines this past summer touted that one recent DWI check point in Raleigh netted 81 arrests and 10 DWI charges.  This was considered a successful check point for the Wake County Traffic Safety Task Force who runs the check points in Wake County.

The team of law enforcement officers who run these check points in Wake County are called the Wake County Traffic Safety Task Force.  They are comprised of the Wake County sheriff’s office and other police forces located in the county.  This includes police officers from Raleigh, Wake Forest, Cary, Garner and Apex among others. The task force conducts these recurrent, unannounced traffic checkpoints in hopes of catching suspected drunken drivers, drivers with suspended or revoked licenses and other traffic offenders.  The task force also serves outstanding warrants and will transport the arrested individuals to the Wake County Jail which is located at 330 S. Salisbury St. Raleigh, NC.

The Task force was launched in April of 2009 and has been successful.  The task force runs numerous check points around the county and has arrested hundreds of drivers for DWI,, other traffic offenses, drug charges and other criminal offenses.

Eric Gurney is a former Wake County Criminal Magistrate who has served as the Magistrate on DWI check point projects.  He has firsthand  experience on how these check points are set up, conducted and maintained.  Mr. Gurney knows “seeing how the system works from the inside is always beneficial when trying to truly understand the complexities of an operation like this.”

If you have been charged with a DWI or any other criminal offense contact Mr. Gurney at (919) 930-4027 for dedicated legal defense.  The Gurney Law Firm serves all of Wake County including Raleigh, Durham, Apex, Cary, Wake Forest, Rolesville, Zebulon, Holly Springs, Garner, Morrisville, Wendell, Knightdale and Fuquay-Varina.  Talk to an attorney 24 Hrs a day at (919) 930-4027.

Next Page »