H123: Misdemeanors/Mandate First Appearances. Latest Version



AN ACT TO REQUIRE A FIRST APPEARANCE BEFORE A DISTRICT COURT JUDGE FOR A DEFENDANT CHARGED WITH A MISDEMEANOR OFFENSE AND HELD IN CUSTODY, AS RECOMMENDED BY THE COURTS COMMISSION.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1.  G.S. 15A‑601 reads as rewritten:

§ 15A‑601.  First appearance before a district court judge; right in felony and other cases in original jurisdiction of superior court; consolidation of first appearance before magistrate and before district court judge; first appearance before clerk of superior court; use of two‑way audio and video transmission.

(a)        Any defendant charged in a magistrate's order under G.S. 15A‑511 or criminal process under Article 17 of this Chapter, Criminal Process, with a crime in the original jurisdiction of the superior court must be brought before a district court judge in the district court district as defined in G.S. 7A‑133 in which the crime is charged to have been committed. This first appearance before a district court judge is not a critical stage of the proceedings against the defendant.



(a3)      Any defendant charged in a magistrate's order under G.S. 15A‑511 or criminal process under Article 17 of this Chapter, Criminal Process, with a misdemeanor offense and held in custody must be brought before a district court judge in the district court district as defined in G.S. 7A‑133 in which the crime is charged to have been committed. This first appearance before a district court judge is not a critical stage of the proceedings against the defendant.

(b)        When a district court judge conducts an initial appearance as provided in G.S. 15A‑511, he or she may consolidate those proceedings and the proceedings under this Article.

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SECTION 2.  This act becomes effective December 1, 2021, and applies to criminal processes served on or after that date.