Criminal Code Recodification
North Carolina’s lack of a streamlined, comprehensive, orderly, and principled criminal code results in costly inefficiencies in our criminal justice system, opportunities for unfairness, and undermines the effectiveness of the criminal law. To resolve this, there is presently an endeavor to address the multitude of different crimes that are located throughout various chapters of the North Carolina General Statutes.
In my capacities as the Senior Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, a Chair of the House Justice and Public Safety Appropriations Committee and the House member of the General Statutes Commission, I was asked by Becki Gray of the John Locke Foundation to serve as a panelist at the Criminal Law Reform Summit that took place in Cary, North Carolina on October 21. The topic of my panel was where do we go from here to successfully address the problem. I was able to give suggestions based on my past experience as both a State and Federal prosecutor, as well as my legislative positions. The panel also answered questions from those in attendance. Cataloging all of the crimes and then eliminating those that are obsolete, unnecessary, redundant, and contain definitions that are inconsistent will be a huge endeavor. But with the involvement of all of the stakeholders, this monumental task can be accomplished as expeditiously as possible.