Criminal Law

Salisbury, NC Criminal Defender

Also Seeing Clients in Mocksville, NC

Criminal Law

If you’ve been arrested and accused of a crime, you need to hire a good lawyer right away. You’re going to need help maneuvering through the legal system and Attorney Ryan B. Addison is here to assist you. You don’t want to wait and wish you had later.

You don't want an amateur; you need an attorney that knows what they're doing.

Mr. Addison can provide you with responsive and effective representation that you can be proud of. You’ve finally found a lawyer that will really try to help you, remaining understanding and compassionate throughout the entire process.

Get nearly 20 years of legal experience on your side:

Do you have questions about your options? Call Attorney Ryan B. Addison at 704-603-4275 to schedule an appointment for your consultation today!

Alcohol Offense Attorney

There are a number of activities that can be captured under this heading, from underage drinking, to selling to minors, to offenses involving alcohol and the operation of motor vehicles. If faced with any of these offenses, or other charges involving alcohol, call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison to discuss your options.

Assault Attorney

This category of offense addresses a wide range of violent behaviors or threats of violence. Depending on the nature of the assault, the victim, and the injury, assaults can range from simple misdemeanors to serious felonies. Need help with your defense? Call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison.

Bond Modifications Attorney

If you or a loved one is in jail while your case is pending, there are some instances in which the services of an attorney may result in a bond reduction or modification. That reduction or modification means the difference between freedom and continued jail time. Call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison for help.

Burglary / Breaking and Entering Attorney

Burglary is entering a building with the intent to commit a crime. This includes entering even an open garage or a door to a house or business that has been left unlocked. If there are people inside at the time, or if you have had prior convictions, it is a serious felony with probable prison time. Call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison for more information.

DWI Attorney

When charged with this type of offense, two legal questions are important in determining how to handle your case. First, did the officer have a reasonable suspicion to stop your vehicle? Second, was there probable cause for your arrest? The answers to these questions can be the deciding factors between a guilty plea and a not guilty plea. Attorney Ryan B. Addison looks closely at these questions in every case to determine the best course of action.

Even if a guilty plea is appropriate, there are many factors that the court will consider in a DWI or DUI case to determine the appropriate punishment. Such factors include: the level of alcohol involved, prior convictions, and whether you had a valid license at the time of arrest. Attorney Ryan B. Addison will look at all of these factors and others to determine where you stand. Additionally, Ryan’s familiarity with the law and the local justice system can make a real difference. A DWI/DUI conviction can have fines as high as $4,000, and jail time in excess of two years. Because there is so much at stake and there are so many complexities, it is highly advisable to seek counsel. Call Ryan for help.

Domestic Violence Protection Attorney

In North Carolina, a person who is the victim of domestic violence, the victim of threatened domestic violence, or who is stalked or harassed to the degree he or she suffers emotional distress, may file a complaint and motion for a domestic violence protective order. There must exist or have existed a relationship between the parties, such as being family members, current or former dating partners, parties with a child in common, or current or former spouses.

When the complaint and motion are filed, the alleged victim has an opportunity to seek an ex parte (one-sided) temporary protective order until a hearing is set so that the other side may have an opportunity to be heard. This is a civil action, although the violation of the protective order is a crime. In some instances, the court may temporarily award child custody, child support, and/or spousal support. The court may also grant possession of the residence and/or vehicle(s). Many complex issues are involved in these matters, and many potential pitfalls exist for the party under such an order, including jail time. In such a situation, it is wise to proceed with the assistance of counsel. Call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison now for help.

Drug Offenses Attorney

For drugs such as heroin, cocaine, ecstasy, or methamphetamines, the state of North Carolina considers even simple possession to be a felony. On the other hand, possession of small amounts of marijuana or paraphernalia is only considered a misdemeanor, which can carry lighter penalties but still adversely affect your future. For these lesser charges, and even some low-level felonies, our law firm may be able to help you enroll in a diversionary program. Programs of this nature require you to perform community service or agree to take certain classes and in exchange, your charges may be dropped.

The most common program is called the 90-96 Program. The 90-96 Program allows the judge, in his or her discretion to voluntarily dismiss the charge of first-time offenders. After the dismissal is entered, the client is eligible to file an expungement that removes any record that the defendant was ever charged with the dismissed crime. In exchange for this opportunity to earn a dismissal, the program typically only requires that you take a drug or alcohol education class and refrain from picking up any new charges.

If you have been charged with drug trafficking in North Carolina, it is important that you contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer immediately. Drug trafficking convictions carry mandatory prison sentences and very large fines that are non-negotiable. A key factor in this analysis is the quantity of the drugs. The charge of “possession with intent to sell and deliver” is less serious than a trafficking charge, and the difference between the charges is based solely on the amount of drugs. By addressing this and other key questions, the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison can help in your defense.

Expungements / Expunctions Attorney

The State of North Carolina allows for one expungement per lifetime per individual. You may be eligible for expungement in these circumstances, if:

  • The charge was dismissed, you were found not guilty, or there was no finding of probable cause and you simply want the charge erased from your record. As long as you have never used an expungement and have not been convicted of a felony, you may be eligible to have multiple charges removed provided that the dates of the offense happened within one year.
  • You have a conviction for a misdemeanor where the date of offense occurred before your 18th birthday, you have no other criminal record before or since that misdemeanor, and you have waited two years since the date of conviction or period of probation is over.
  • You have a conviction for a “non-violent” felony where the date of offense occurred before your 18th birthday, you have had no other criminal convictions before or since, and you have waited four years since the conviction or completion of probation, whichever occurs later. There are additional requirements under this statute.
  • You have a conviction for misdemeanor drug possession or paraphernalia, felony possession of certain drugs, or underage possession of alcohol; the charge occurred before your 21st birthday; and you have had no other criminal convictions on your record before or since. There are additional requirements under this statute.
  • You were ANY AGE on the date of offense, you were convicted of a “non-violent” felony or misdemeanor, you have had no other criminal convictions on your record before or since, and you have waited 15 years after the conviction or completion of probation, whichever occurs later. There are additional requirements under this statute.
  • The expungement process usually takes more than six months from the date of the filing of the petition with the clerk. If the applicant is seeking removal of any matter that was dismissed pursuant to a deferral program, or if it is a conviction you are seeking to remove, there is a $175 filing fee that must accompany the petition.

Felonies Attorney

Sentencing for felonies is more extensive than for misdemeanors. Felonies are categorized in classes ranging from Class I—the least serious, carrying a maximum punishment of 15 months in prison—to Class A—the most serious, carrying a maximum sentence of death, or life without parole. The prior record level for felonies will range from a record Level 1 for a defendant with 0 points, to the most serious prior record level, Level 6, which is the level for defendants with 19 or more points. Under felony sentencing, the points for ascertaining the record level are determined by a set of rules where prior misdemeanor convictions carry one point each and prior felony convictions carry two points each for the least serious felonies and up to ten points each for the most serious.

How you will ultimately be sentenced, should you be found guilty or plead guilty, will depend on the class of the offense you are charged with and your prior record level. If you plan to asserting innocence, the likely outcome will be a jury trial in which your guilt or innocence is determined by a group of twelve of your peers. Due to the complexities involved in a felony case, the risk of incarceration, and the potential for other collateral consequences, you should not undertake these matters without the assistance of capable counsel. Call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison to schedule a consult.

Fraud and Other Financial Crimes Attorney


Involves the willful or knowing use of property of another for unauthorized purposes while acting in a fiduciary capacity. For property or cash under $100k, it is a Class H felony punishable by up to 30 months in prison; for property or cash over $100k, it is a Class C felony punishable by up to 261 months in prison.

Obtaining Property by False Pretenses

The false representation of a past, existing, or future fact, or promise of future performance, that is intended to deceive and does in fact deceive another from whom money, services, or something of value is obtained. For any amount under $100k, this is punishable as a Class H felony with up to 30 months in prison; an amount over $100k is a Class C felony and punishable by up to 261 months in prison.

Forgery and Uttering

Forgery is the making, falsifying, or counterfeiting of any check, note, or warrant with the intent to injure or defraud. It is a Class I felony, punishable by up to 15 months in prison. Uttering is the attempt to pass or the passing of a forged instrument to gain or to injure another and is also a Class I felony, punishable by up to 15 months in prison.

Juvenile Offense Attorney

Juveniles can commit the same crimes as adults and will be assigned a court-appointed counsel. Still, you have the option of hiring your own attorney, so call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison now. In dealing with juvenile crime, the state of North Carolina is more concerned with rehabilitation than punishment. Penalties are often less severe, and judges and prosecutors are usually more willing to find compromises that will not necessarily destroy the child’s chance at having a successful future. In many cases, Ryan can help you appeal to the court for alternative forms of sentencing. For example, instead of being sentenced to a juvenile detention center, a juvenile may be sent to a wilderness therapy program or other type of counseling facility. In some cases, charges may be deferred or dropped in exchange for community service.

Larceny and Shoplifting Attorney

Misdemeanor offenses are addressed here. For felonies, typically the offense will involve items in excess of $1,000 in value or obtained pursuant to a breaking and entering. Call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison to schedule a consultation.

Misdemeanors Attorney

Misdemeanors are divided into one of four classes (3, 2, 1, and A1) ranging from the least serious, Class 3, to the most serious, Class A1. Class 3 misdemeanors carry a maximum active sentence of 20 days of incarceration, and Class A1 misdemeanors carry a maximum active sentence of 150 days. For misdemeanors, the defendant’s prior record level is divided into three categories: Level 1—no prior convictions; Level 2—one to four prior convictions; and Level 3—five or more prior convictions. Some of the most common misdemeanors include:

Shoplifting and Misdemeanor Larceny

Shoplifting, or concealment of merchandise, is a Class 3 misdemeanor punishable by up to 20 days in jail and is often charged when items are concealed while still on store property. Misdemeanor larceny, a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable by up to 120 days in jail, is charged where the item taken is valued at less than $1000, no breaking and entering occurred, and the individual has exhibited the intent to deprive the owner permanently of its use.

Resist, Delay or Obstruct a law enforcement officer

A Class 2 misdemeanor, punishable by up to 60 days in jail, where the offender interferes with the carrying out of a law enforcement official’s duty. This can include running or resisting the police during an arrest, lying to an officer about your name or the location of an individual when an arrest warrant is being served, or interfering with an officer who is carrying out various other official duties.

Damage or Injury to Personal Property and Real Property

Includes damage or destruction to buildings, land, or personal property such as vehicles, and punishable as a Class 1 or Class 2 misdemeanor. Trespassing – Trespassing occurs when one remains on property after being notified not to enter or remain on the premises, and it is punishable as either a Class 2 or Class 3 misdemeanor.

Disorderly Conduct and Public Disturbance

Charged as a Class 2 misdemeanor, these offenses involve public fighting, the public use of abusive language or gestures, blocking entry to a public building, disrupting the education of students in a public or private school, or disruption of a religious service.

Simple Assault and Simple Affray

Both Class 2 misdemeanors, simple assault is any offensive contact or the apprehension of harmful physical contact by another person and simple affray is defined as engaging in fighting in a public place.

Communicating Threats, Stalking, Cyberstalking, and Harassing Phone Calls

These misdemeanors include threats of harm to another where it is reasonable to believe the threat could be carried out, as well as repeated contact with another in person, by phone, text, or email, where the purpose is to harass, threaten, or annoy the alleged victim.

For first-time offenders, Ryan has had great past success getting his clients entered into diversion programs that, upon completion, result in a voluntary dismissal. Call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison for more information.

Orders for Arrest Attorney

The most common scenario involving such orders for arrest is when a person misses court. At the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison, we have represented a number of clients seeking to get orders for arrest stricken. If an order for your arrest has been issued, call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison now.

Probation Violations Attorney

If you are currently on probation, you should consider yourself fortunate that you are not in jail. Probation is a contract, between you and the court, to avoid jail time. If you have been brought into court for a probation violation, it is alleged you broke that contract. Some probation violations are technical in nature; some are substantive. You need an attorney who knows and understands these differences and who can advocate on your behalf as to why you need more time on probation as opposed to an activation of your jail sentence. It is advisable that you not try to do this on your own. Call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison to schedule a consult.

Sex Crimes Attorney

A conviction for a sexual offense could negatively affect your life for years. In addition to a jail or prison sentence and possibly mandatory registration as a sex offender, collateral consequences may include difficulties finding a job, maintaining family relationships, and finding suitable housing. If you have been arrested or charged with a sex crime, call the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison for help.

Traffic Ticket Attorney

A traffic ticket can threaten your ability to drive and also add points to your insurance, which could cause your rates to skyrocket. By hiring a traffic ticket and traffic violation attorney, you can be assured that your case will be reviewed thoroughly. At the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison, we seek to protect your license and keep your insurance rates from rising. We defend our clients against a wide variety of traffic tickets, including:


Do not proceed with a speeding ticket on your own unless or until you talk to an attorney. For example, did you know that simply paying off a ticket is an admission of guilt? Are you aware that two convictions of speeding over 55mph in a twelve-month period will result in the suspension of your license? There are simply too many opportunities for mistakes in this area. At the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison, we are experienced in these matters and can help you save time and money.

Improper Equipment (IE)

Improper Equipment can occur if a vehicle has equipment or mechanical problems such as dangerous tires, an improper muffler, or a broken speedometer. IE is also a lesser-included offense to the offense of speeding. A prosecutor may allow a reduction to IE for speeding violations, so long as certain conditions are present. This is typically the best result an attorney can negotiate for you, aside from a dismissal.

Driving While Impaired (DWI)/Driving Under the Influence (DUI)

For more info on DWI, please see our website here.

Driving While License Revoked/Suspended (DWLR)

Driving is considered a privilege, not a right. However, most of us depend on that privilege to live normal lives and earn a living. Your driver’s license can be suspended for a number of reasons, such as too many traffic violations, a DWI/DUI offense, unpaid traffic tickets, failure to appear in court, or even the failure to pay child support. At the Law Offices of Ryan B. Addison, we seek to reverse the license suspension and help our clients enjoy the freedom of driving again.

Other types of tickets we can help with include:

Prayer for Judgment Continued (PJC)

A “prayer for judgment continued” is a disposition after a plea of guilty where the judge suspends entering a judgment in the case. In traffic cases, a PJC essentially keeps any insurance or driver’s license points from accruing on your record for the underlying offense. Only one PJC can be granted per household every three years; a second PJC can be used within five years solely for the purpose of preventing the addition of driver’s license points.

Weapons Offenses Attorney

We represent those charged with weapons violations involving guns, knives, brass knuckles, and other dangerous items used to intimidate or harm another person. In North Carolina, if you have a felony conviction, you are stripped of your right to possess a firearm. Even if you are not carrying the gun—if it is in your car or your house—as a felon you could still be charged with a weapons violation. Carrying a concealed gun is a misdemeanor offense in North Carolina unless you have a concealed-carry permit.

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Mocksville, NC Office
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