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North Carolina's Brunswick County Traffic Court Resumes After Shutdown

This past summer the Brunswick County traffic court was shut down by an administrative judicial order. The closing stemmed from an internal dispute in the Brunswick County court system between the district attorney and District Court Judge Jerry Jolly. Judge Jolly disbanded the entire administrative traffic court system for Brunswick, Columbus and Baden counties last April, alleging the district attorney had received inappropriate campaign contributions from a non-profit that might have benefitted from traffic court decisions. The traffic court did not reopen until this past September.

At the time of the order shutting down the traffic court, newly-elected District Attorney Jon David received a $250 campaign contribution from a traffic school program operator, which Judge Jolly determined was inappropriate. District Attorney David has appealed Judge Jolly's decision all the way to the state supreme court. Both Judge Jolly and District Attorney David have submitted briefs, but the case has yet to be heard by the state Supreme Court. Judge Jolly is arguing the case should be thrown out, as the issue is moot since traffic court has resumed. District Attorney David is arguing Judge Jolly never had the authority to issue the administrative order shutting down the traffic court in the first place.

While the legal proceedings were taking place, the North Carolina legislature passed a law in its budget that required an operational traffic court in every county by Oct. 1, 2011. Administrative traffic court allows separate hearings for traffic citations. Without it, people who receive traffic tickets bottleneck regular court proceedings with matters that can often reach settlement in a few minutes after discussing payment, plea and fine details. Due to the fears a prolonged shutdown would clog up an already overburdened system, the state legislature acted quickly to ensure traffic court would resume for those counties affected.

Moving Forward

Administrative traffic court is slowly getting back up to speed in Brunswick county, reports WECT 6 News in Wilmington. On a recent day in September, 236 cases were scheduled to be heard. As many as 1,000 can be heard on a given day, and those numbers are expected to increase as the traffic court gets back up to speed.

For Brunswick, Columbus and Baden county residents, this means being charged with a traffic violation will again mean time at traffic court. If you have been charged with a traffic violation, consult with an attorney experienced in fighting traffic violation charges. A lawyer may be able to reduce fines and penalties, and possibly avoid license revocation or other serious punishment.

Office Location

Dickerson Law Firm, P.A.
106 North Churton Street
Hillsborough NC 27278

Telephone: (919) 241-5142
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Hillsborough Law Office

The Dickerson Law Firm, P.A. serves people in Raleigh-Durham and throughout North Carolina, including Cary, Chapel Hill, Burlington, Apex, Graham, Roxboro, Siler City, Hillsborough, Pittsboro, Yanceyville and all cities within Orange County, Durham County, Wake County, Alamance County, Chatham County, Person County and Caswell County, NC.

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