Embezzlement charge in Wake County North Carolina § 14-90

February 10, 2012 by  
Filed under Criminal Law

Embezzlement charge in Wake County North Carolina § 14-90

The charge of Embezzlement § 14-90 is one of the more common financial crimes charged in Wake County, North Carolina. The charge of Embezzlement is usually an accusation by an employer that an employee fraudulently used or took money / cash or company property that the employee was entrusted with and used it in a manner that they were not allowed.

Embezzlement is a very serious crime in North Carolina. In most cases an Embezzlement charge in North Carolina will be punished as a Class H Felony. Under current felony sentencing structure in North Carolina a class H felony has a maximum punishment of 25 months active per charge. The felony sentencing in North Carolina is guided by the defendant’s prior record level and can vary greatly depending on which felony sentencing level the defendant falls under. In cases where the amount of funds (or value of property) is more than $100,000 the Felony Class goes up to a level C Felony. A Class C felony in North Carolina has a maximum punishment of 182 months active.

It is important to have a real conversation with your criminal defense lawyer about the best and worst possible outcome of each and every charge against you. If you have been charged with embezzlement or any financial crime you should contact a lawyer who deals with that type of law. There are many rights and options that need to be explained to you before you walk into a courtroom to face these charges. In some circumstances it may even be possible for your criminal defense lawyer to resolve the matter without you having to ever go to court. It is important to remember that there are many different situations or financial transactions (some accidental and some knowingly) that can lead charges of Embezzlement. No case is ever the same and no particular outcome can be guaranteed.

What is embezzlement?

Embezzlement is when a person fraudulently uses the property or money of another for a purpose other than that for which the person received it and while that person was entrusted with the safe keeping of that property or money.

How is embezzlement different than larceny? Embezzlement Vs. Larceny

Larceny is the taking of another person’s property or money with the intent to permanently deprive them of its use. A classic example is when a teenager goes into a store like Wal-Mart and takes a pair of jeans without paying for them. Embezzlement is similar to larceny, but it must involve someone taking (or giving away, misappropriating or misusing) property or money they were entrusted with. A classic example would be if an employee Wal-Mart such as a cashier took money out of her cash register for her own use. In this case the theft came from someone who was entrusted with the safe keeping of that property.

If I have been charged with Embezzlement can I just return the money and have the charges dropped?

The short answer is NO, the charges will not be dropped if you simply payback the money. But, there are countless reasons and variation of situations that can change this answer. No case is ever the exact same and needs to be treated and defended as such. In general the charges brought against you were brought by the State of North Carolina. If you have been charged, your case is considered (and referred to as) The State of North Carolina VS. Defendant… Not Wal-Mart VS. Defendant. So, while the employer victim may have some say in the outcome of the case, it is ultimately up to the Wake County District Attorney’s Office to prosecute or not prosecute the case.

What does the North Carolina General Statute say?

§ 14 90. Embezzlement of property received by virtue of office or employment.
(a) This section shall apply to any person:
(1) Exercising a public trust.
(2) Holding a public office.
(3) Who is a guardian, administrator, executor, trustee, or any receiver, or any other fiduciary, including, but not limited to, a settlement agent, as defined in G.S. 45A 3.
(4) Who is an officer or agent of a corporation, or any agent, consignee, clerk, bailee or servant, except persons under the age of 16 years, of any person.
(b) Any person who shall:
(1) Embezzle or fraudulently or knowingly and willfully misapply or convert to his own use, or
(2) Take, make away with or secrete, with intent to embezzle or fraudulently or knowingly and willfully misapply or convert to his own use,
any money, goods or other chattels, bank note, check or order for the payment of money issued by or drawn on any bank or other corporation, or any treasury warrant, treasury note, bond or obligation for the payment of money issued by the United States or by any state, or any other valuable security whatsoever that (i) belongs to any other person or corporation, unincorporated association or organization or (ii) are closing funds as defined in G.S. 45A 3, which shall have come into his possession or under his care, shall be guilty of a felony.
(c) If the value of the property described in subsection (b) of this section is one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) or more, the person is guilty of a Class C felony. If the value of the property is less than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000), the person is guilty of a Class H felony.

What is a PJC or Prayer for Judgment Continued?

November 17, 2011 by  
Filed under Criminal Law, Traffic Law

What is a PJC or Prayer for Judgment Continued? How do I get a PJC?

A PJC or Prayer for Judgment Continued in North Carolina is a finding of guilt without an entry of judgment for a criminal or traffic offense.  A PJC is a creation of the North Carolina courts and is unique to our state.  A PJC is typically used in traffic cases and some criminal misdemeanor cases.  A PJC in Wake County is only granted by a Wake County District or Superior court Judge.

When a defendant gets a PJC on a traffic ticket they may receive no Division of Motor Vehicle points or insurance points in most cases.  Also in most cases a defendant’s license may not be suspended when they receive a PJC.  It is important to remember that even though no points are added to the driver license or insurance, it will still show up on your driving record.

Many people believe that getting a Prayer for judgment is a “cure-all” legal remedy and is a good disposition for all cases, but this simply isn’t true for all cases.  While a PJC is great for some situations and charges, it can be harmful in others.

Prayer for Judgment continued (PJC) facts for North Carolina:

  1. No license or insurance points will be assessed (in most cases) if you get a PJC
  2. After a PJC is granted there are usually no fines assessed, only court cost
  3. A defendant may use 1 PJC every 3 years per household for insurances point purposes
  4. A defendant may use 2 PJCs every 5 years for license (DMV) points
  5. PJC cannot be used on all traffic infractions… no PJC for DWI or speeding over 25 MPH or CDL related charges
  6. A PJC is not recognized for active Commercial Drivers Licenses (CDL) or when driving a commercial vehicle when the citation
    was issued
  7. In some cases the Judge may require the Defendant to take a class or do community service in order to grant the PJC

How do I get a PJC?

If you have been charged with a traffic offense or criminal charge a PJC might be the best option for you.  Because every case is different you should contact a criminal defense law firm like The Gurney Law firm to review your case.  If you qualify for a PJC and it is in your best interest to do so, your attorney will ask the court to enter a guilty plea without entry of judgment.

Will a PJC or Prayer for Judgment Continued be on my criminal record?

YES!  A PJC in North Carolina will show up on your criminal record.  This is one reason why a PJC might not be the best way to handle some cases. But, can a PJC then be expunged of my NC criminal record?

Can a PJC be expunged off my NC criminal record?

On this area of the law there is some debate among Judges and attorneys as to whether this can / should be done.  I will discuss this topic in more detail in another Legal News Blog on The Gurney Law Firm website.

Can I use a PJC for misdemeanor offense that aren’t traffic related?

Yes, and this is a common use for a PJC.  But remember that it is still a plea of guilty and does show up on a criminal history check in North Carolina.  It is much better to have a criminal defense lawyer to get the case dismissed or go to trial and have a not guilty verdict.

Is a PJC right for my case?

Every case is different and you should always ask a criminal defense lawyer like Eric Gurney to review your specific charges.  Because every case is different, there is no way to tell you if a PJC is right for your case until I hear all the facts.  Eric Gurney is a criminal defense lawyer in Raleigh and can tell you if a PJC is right for you.

The Gurney Law Firm is a criminal defense firm in Raleigh, North Carolina.  Eric J Gurney is a former Wake County Magistrate and has years of experience dealing with the North Carolina court system.  If you need a criminal lawyer in Raleigh, Cary, Apex or Wake County please call us at (919) 930-4027.  The Gurney law firm handles traffic tickets in Raleigh, drug charges in Wake County,  and serious felony charges in the Triangle among all other criminal charges.

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.