NC trooper does not appear for court, 90 misdemeanor cases dismissed
A North Carolina state highway trooper reportedly did not appear in court Monday. The court calendar apparently included at least 20 cases involving allegations of driving while impaired where the trooper was the arresting officer. In all, as many as 90 misdemeanor traffic charges were scheduled for hearing and in the absence of the state’s star witness, the Montgomery County judge presiding over the court calendar reportedly dismissed the charges.
It is unclear from news reports at what stage the court cases had reached before the trooper failed to appear in court Monday. The District Attorney’s Office apparently refused to indicate whether or not prosecutors will seek to pursue any of the cases, including the 20 or so cases involving DWI charges. It is equally unclear from the media whether the prosecutor or the judge initiated the dismissals.
The state trooper who had ticketed the defendants who had court appearances Monday is also a Candor town commissioner. He has been under fire after his own arrest on serious allegations that he unlawfully accessed a government computer. Some people apparently are speculating that the town commissioner’s legal difficulties may be one explanation for his failure to appear as a state trooper to support the prosecutor’s misdemeanor cases in criminal court.
It may be possible that many of the 90 dismissed cases, including the DWI charges, could be brought back into court for prosecution. In the meantime, those who had been charged with the variety of crimes may be in legal limbo as prosecutors decide how to proceed.
Greenville DWI defense lawyers understand that many people can be confused by many aspects of the complex rules of court in North Carolina. Often, in misdemeanor cases especially, many people in Pitt County and other areas of North Carolina are tempted to just pay the ticket or plead guilty in court to get the matter behind them.
It is important to discuss an individual case to consider speaking with an experienced criminal defense attorney when facing a charge to better understand what potential defenses may be available and what the consequences may arise as a result of pleading guilty to a crime.
WFMY News, “Wayne Holyfield No Show In Court; 90 Traffic Cases ‘Dismissed’,” April 30 2012
WFMY News, “Candor Commissioner Wayne Holyfield Refuses To Resign Despite Community Demands,” April 10, 2012