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Check out the latest posts from Cummings & Kennedy's Carteret County law blog.

What Freedoms Do I Lose If I Am On Probation

  • By James Cummings
  • Feb 18, 2015

Knowing what to expect when you are charged with a crime helps you prepare for the future. For example, if you will be required to pay fines and costs, knowing what is included in your total helps you budget your finances in a way that allows you to pay what is due while still meeting your personal obligations. It is also helpful to know what will be expected of you if you agreed to a term of probation, and what might happen if you fail to abide by those terms.  

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What Is Structured Sentencing?

  • By James Cummings
  • Feb 17, 2015

Crimes are classified as either felonies or misdemeanors. The difference between the two is largely a question of the severity of punishment imposed. Misdemeanors are punishable by up to one year in jail while felonies carry longer terms of imprisonment. Along with the classification of crimes comes the classification of sentence types. Sentences can be suspended, deferred, or imposed immediately. It is important to know the difference because the way your sentence is imposed determines the amount of freedom you may or may not have if convicted.  

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Criminal Law Myths

  • By James Cummings
  • Feb 17, 2015

Criminal law is a complex area of law, with as many exceptions to the rules are there are rules. Unfortunately there is no shortage of people with an opinion about the law, and if you are charged with a crime it is important you receive accurate information. The consequences of a criminal conviction range from probation, fines, restitution, community service, and incarceration. These events impact your freedom, your finances, and can damage your reputation or employment.  

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Felony or Misdemeanor?

  • By James Cummings
  • Feb 17, 2015

Being charged with any crime is life changing. In the initial moments after arrest, you are confused and scared; and rightfully so! Common concerns include wondering how the arrest will impact your life at home, work, school, or in the community. Some people face possible loss of employment if convicted of a crime, or might feel overwhelmed at the thought of having to pay criminal restitution. The possibility of going to jail is frightening, and criminal defendants often feel helpless. But cases can be and are won all the time. The first thing you should do is consult a skilled criminal defense attorney, and learn what the possible outcomes of your case include.  

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How Can I Get My Bond Reduced?

  • By James Cummings
  • Feb 17, 2015

When you are arrested for a crime, you may have the right to have the Court set a bond, so you can return home and work while your case is pending. A criminal case can move slowly, and it is important that you are out of jail while waiting for your hearings so you can continue going to work or school and providing for your family. But if the bond is set too high, you should ask the Court for a reduction in bond so it is manageable for your finances.  

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Another Celebrity Faces Criminal Charges

  • By James Cummings
  • Feb 16, 2015

Celebrities are no strangers to being in the spotlight, and sometimes it’s not always for the right reasons. It isn’t hard to find a story about a celebrity arrest, and the types of crimes are as various as are the celebrity. We’ve seen arrests from the likes of Lindsay Lohan all the way to Mel Gibson. Celebrities of all ages and profession seem unable to stay out of trouble. A recent arrest was made in the case of a famous rapper.   

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Consequences Of Violating Court Orders

  • By James Cummings
  • Feb 16, 2015

 
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Posting Bond

  • By James Cummings
  • Jul 11, 2014

If you have been arrested for a crime, even if you have a “Get Out of Jail” free card, it probably won’t work. Chances are you will have to post bail to get out of jail while you wait for your next Court hearing. A bail bond is a financial guarantee to the Court that you will return for the proceedings against you. Bail is not a guarantee; the person arrested has to ask the Court to set an amount to be posted.  

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Yesterday the Supreme Court decided a case that one Justice called “perhaps the most important criminal procedure case that this Court has heard in decades.” A bare majority of the Court ruled that the police may take DNA from those arrested for, but not yet convicted of, “serious offense[s].” The case resolves a deep split among the lower courts; mostly resolves the constitutionality of the DNA-on-arrest statutes of 28 states, including North Carolina; and according to the dissent, is so deeply mistaken that if it is not wrong, “there is no such thing as error.” The case is Maryland v. King. 

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