Tag Archives: Raleigh Criminal Defense Attorney

What Is Adjudication And How Is It Different Than A Conviction In Raleigh?

When a juvenile breaks the law, there are two possibilities after the arrest, depending on the type of charges involved. Underage offenders who commit minor offenses are brought into the juvenile court system. Juveniles who commit more serious crimes—drug and/or weapons possessions, assault and other felonies—are generally tried as an adult in the criminal justice system. The focus of the juvenile court system is rehabilitation and intervention, rather than punishment, the focus of the adult criminal justice system.

Definition

This term has a number of meanings in different places. Black’s Law Dictionary defines adjudication as “the giving or pronouncing a judgment or decree in a cause; also the judgment given.”

In Raleigh, North Carolina, “adjudication” in juvenile court is the equivalent of the term “conviction” for an adult in criminal court. Court proceedings are handled in state court.

What Is Adjudication?

Juvenile Criminal Defense Attorney In Raleigh

Juvenile cases are similar to adult court proceedings. The trial is called an “adjudicatory hearing,” where a judge (and in some jurisdictions, a jury) reviews the evidence and determines the facts prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt. If he or she has been found “guilty” in juvenile court, the verdict is called “adjudication.”

An adjudication does not always mean incarceration (also called “commitment”) as it might in an adult criminal court. Since the focus is on rehabilitation before the age of 18 (and sometimes, 21), there are a number of alternatives to jail time that a juvenile can receive.

Deferred adjudication (also called Diversion) is an alternative to incarceration that may involve probation or other conditions that the juvenile will have to meet to resolve, and possibly dismiss the charge or charges. Deferred adjudication is frequently used in cases where the circumstances of the case warrant giving the juvenile a second chance.

The Disposition is the equivalent of a sentence and is the final decision on how the juvenile’s case will be handled after adjudication. Again, rehabilitation is the goal, so the disposition can include:

  • Fines and restitution
  • Community service
  • In-home placement under supervision or probation
  • Out of home placement in commitment facilities

Disposition can also involve a specific treatment plan to address conditions in the child’s current behavior and living environment.

Adjudication is also not a matter of public record as standard criminal convictions are.

Conviction

As an adult, a conviction in criminal court is a different matter, proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the individual did commit the crime in question.  Depending on the severity of the charges and the outcome, fines, loss of a driver’s license, and jail time are possibilities.

While juvenile charges may, eventually, be reduced or dismissed, adult criminal convictions aren’t as easy to lose. A conviction, even if no jail time is involved, can bring difficult restrictions that may be lifelong obstacles, such as:

  • Losing the right to vote
  • Barred from holding a public office
  • Barred from serving as a juror
  • Restrictions from many types of employment that require licensure (health care workers, attorneys, barbers and cosmetologists, and others), depending on the charges

Employment restrictions may depend on the type of charges one is convicted of; but discharge from employment is also possible in occupations where “moral turpitude” is a factor. Once discharged after a criminal conviction, unemployment can also be denied.

Convictions can be expunged under certain circumstances. A skilled criminal defense attorney can help you remove a conviction from your record, or appeal if necessary.

Juvenile Criminal Defense Attorney In Raleigh

Children in trouble can be a parent’s worst nightmare, but help is available. Attorney Dewey P. Brinkley is a former Wake County prosecutor who understands the court system and can help defend your child in juvenile or adult court. Call today: 919-832-0307 (or contact him online) to schedule an appointment for your free initial consultation.

Raleigh Defense Lawyer Answers – How to Choose a Great Attorney? (Video)

This is Part 34 of our weekly North Carolina Criminal Defense video blog: “How to Choose a Great Attorney?

Transcript:

I think the most important thing when you’re trying to decide who to hire as a criminal defense lawyer is their level of experience. How much experience do they have in the courtroom and how much experience do they have with the people in those courtrooms (the officers, the judges, the district attorney’s office)? There’s no substitute for experience in a criminal case.

I’ve tried over a 1,000 cases here in Wake County. I’ve worked as an assistant DA here in this county. And as a defense lawyer now for 11 years, I’ve been before the same judges, the same officers, deal with the same DAs on a day-to-day basis.

But it’s also listening to the client and trying to get to know the client as well as possible. Where that client is coming from. What their experience is. How they ended up in this situation. I think that’s one piece that I try to get to know my clients as much as I can.

I think the only thing else you can talk about is preparation. Do you have a lawyer who is going to spend the time preparing your case? I try to prepare my cases, meet with my clients, get to know those clients, know the law and the facts of the case, before we go to court. So that we can achieve the best outcome for that particular client.

Our offices are located right across the street from the Wake County Justice Center. We’re in close proximity to the courthouse, so I’m here most days working late, meeting with clients, and I’m very very convenient to the courthouse. I think the most important thing that you can do if you’re looking to hire a criminal lawyer is meet with that person and decide how comfortable you are with them. What we try to do at our firm is learn about our clients and spend the time and the preparation work knowing their case to try to achieve the best possible outcome for that particular client.

Raleigh Attorney Answers – How Can I Get My Suspended License Back? (Video)

This is Part 33 of our weekly North Carolina Criminal Defense video blog: “How Can I Get My Suspended License Back?

Transcript:

The first thing we try to do is look at your driving record and see if there’s any possible way that we can restore your driving privilege, get your license back. Is it because you failed to appear in court and missed a ticket? Is it just a matter of resolving that ticket? Are you revoked for some other reason? Was there a driving while impaired conviction, and you didn’t do your substance abuse treatment, or that form wasn’t sent into the DMV?

Driving while license revoked is one of the most prevalent crimes that we see in Wake County District Court. Lots of people do not know how they can get their privilege back. If they call me and they have their driving record, we can go through that and hopefully resolve the issue that’s causing that suspension.

How a Raleigh Drug Attorney Can Help Your Possession Case (Video)

This is Part 32 of our weekly North Carolina Criminal Defense video blog: “How a Raleigh Drug Attorney Can Help Your Possession Case

Transcript:

The big difference is between simply possessing a controlled substance and possessing it with the intent to sell it or deliver it, or were you actually caught selling it?

If it’s simply a possession crime, and you’re a user, and you haven’t been in trouble before, there are certain safeguards that are available to you in North Carolina that will allow you, if you’re successful, to potentially earn a dismissal and get the matter expunged from your record.

It’s different if you’re caught selling or possessing a substance with the intent to sell it. That’s when the stakes get much higher.

Raleigh Defense Lawyer – Prison Alternatives For NC Drug Cases (Video)

This is Part 31 of our weekly North Carolina Criminal Defense video blog: “Prison Alternatives For NC Drug Cases

Transcript:

Typically, if you’re charged with a drug crime, you’re not eligible for a conditional discharge or a felony diversion. You’re going to be tried on supervised probation before being sent to prison unless it’s a trafficking case. Trafficking is going to be based on weight. If you’ve got more than 10 pounds of marijuana, or four grams of heroin, or 28 grams or more of cocaine, those are all going to be trafficking level crimes. By statute, you do have to do prison time on those. The only exception to that is if you actually decide to become an informant, work with the police, or provide what we call substantial assistance, which can potentially have the court sentence you to probation rather than that mandatory active time.

Raleigh Defense Attorney Talks Drug Detox Programs as Part of an NC Sentence (Video)

This is Part 30 of our weekly North Carolina Criminal Defense video blog: “Drug Detox Programs as Part of an NC Sentence

Transcript:

Drug treatment court is a great program that we have here in Wake County. Basically, it involves the offender being on supervised probation, but it involves weekly meetings and counseling sessions. Part of the process is that if there are positive urine screens for drugs, that offender can spend the weekend in jail. They have their own sanctions. It’s a great program here in Wake County if you’re on probation.

Raleigh Defense Attorney – Benefits of a Wake County Native for Your Case (Video)

This is Part 29 of our weekly North Carolina Criminal Defense video blog: “Benefits of a Wake County Native for Your Case

Transcript:

I grew up in Wake County and went to Wake County Public Schools. My parents are from this area. I basically grew up here, went to school here, spent most of my adult life here, and I live here. I love this community. I’ve lived my entire life here and this is where I’ve decided to practice law exclusively here in Wake County.

Raleigh Defense Lawyer Answers – “Should I Speak to the Police?” (Video)

This is Part 28 of our weekly North Carolina Criminal Defense video blog: “Should I Speak to the Police?

Transcript:

A lot of times people call me and they haven’t yet been charged with a crime, but they’ve received a phone call from a detective or an investigator and they want to know whether they should call that person back and actually talk to them. They’re maybe not sure if they’ve done anything wrong or whether they’ve actually committed a crime, but somebody from a police department has touched base with them and they’re trying to make a decision should I call this person back and meet with them.

Just know under our Constitution that you have the absolute right against self incrimination. Your right to remain silent cannot be used against you in a court of law. I advise folks never to talk to a detective or a police officer without an attorney present because so often you really can’t help yourself, number one, by talking to the police. Their job is to build a case against you. There are certain circumstances under which I have gone with clients to give an interview to a police officer, but never talk to a police officer without your attorney present.

Raleigh Defense Lawyer Discusses Larceny Charges in NC (Video)

This is Part 25 of our weekly North Carolina Criminal Defense video blog: “Larceny Charges in NC

Transcript:

Larceny in North Carolina is basically taking the property of another person or entity with the intent to deprive them permanently of its use.

If I’m in Belk’s Department Store or Crabtree and I take something off the shelf and I exit the store and get completely through the doors and out into the parking lot, I have evidenced that intent to deprive Belk permanently of that merchandise. That’s what we call misdemeanor larceny as long as it’s under $1,000.

Felony larceny can be charged in a number of different instances. Everything from removing an anti-theft device from a piece of merchandise to stealing something over $1,000 or it can be larceny pursuant to a breaking and entering of a residence. All of those are characterized as felony larceny.

Raleigh Defense Attorney Answers, “What Types of Felonies Have You Defended?” (Video)

This is Part 23 of our weekly North Carolina Criminal Defense video blog: “What Types of Felonies Have You Defended?

Transcript:

I’ve represented clients charged with murder, felony sex offenses, robbery with a dangerous weapon, kidnapping, and assault with a deadly weapon with the intent to kill. I’ve tried all of those types of cases before a jury here in Wake County. I’ve tried probably at least 30 felony trials where the offense was what we consider a Class A through E felony.