Rebecca Yoder


Despite the Court's efforts in Rothgery to shore up a "bright-line rule" for attachment based upon prior case law, the contours of the Sixth Amendment right to counsel are still somewhat obscure. To understand the impact of the Court's holding, each state will need to assess its criminal procedure and identify how to reconcile the Court's holding with current practices. This Comment identifies two areas of North Carolina criminal procedure that have been impacted by the Court's holding in Rothgery: (1) the expanded scope of a defendant's protection under the Sixth Amendment during police questioning under Rothgery; and (2) Rothgery's impact on attachment of the right to counsel in light of the arresting officer's discretion to cite the arrestee rather than perform a full custodial arrest. This Comment will discuss: the disconnect between the rule enunciated in Rothgery and current North Carolina criminal procedure; the impact of Rothgery on current practices, specifically police interrogation of defendants without the presence of counsel and the practice of misdemeanor citation and custodial arrest; and finally, recommendations for streamlining North Carolina criminal procedure to comply with the Court's holding in Rothgery.



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