Offense Date for Habitual Felon Indictments

A recent conversation reminded me about a question I’ve received several times over the years: On a habitual felon indictment, what should be listed as the offense date? The two main choices are (1) the date of the substantive felony with which the defendant is charged, and (2) the date of the last of the defendant’s previous convictions, i.e., the date that the defendant became a habitual felon.

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When Charging Murder, Is the Offense Date the Date of the Attack, or the Date of the Victim’s Death?

Suppose that Dan shoots Victor on January 1, and that Victor dies from his wounds, but not until January 3. When a magistrate issues an arrest warrant, or the grand jury returns an indictment, should the date of offense be listed as January 1, the date of the attack? Or January 3, the date of … Read more


Alibi Defense Doesn’t Mean the State Can’t Amend the Offense Date

A criminal indictment must allege an offense date. G.S. 15A-924(a)(4) provides that a criminal pleading must contain “[a] statement or cross reference in each count indicating that the offense charged was committed on, or on or about, a designated date, or during a designated period of time.” The statutory short forms reiterate this requirement. See, … Read more