North Carolina

NC Man Arrested for Violating Century-Old Profanity Law

A judge has ruled law unconstitutional


Police have charged a Wilson man with violating a 100-year-old profanity law that a North Carolina judge has found unconstitutional.

Prosecutors and police commanders said Friday they would examine the arrest of 37-year-old Joey Ricky Carson on a charge of using profane language on a public road or highway. Carson was arrested Dec. 21 and has a court appearance scheduled in February.

"If a court with jurisdiction has made a ruling on the statute that is applicable and that ruling deems it unconstitutional, then one possible remedy would be a voluntary dismissal," Assistant District Attorney Charles Thomas said.

Thomas was unfamiliar with Carson's case and said prosecutors would research the matter before deciding how to proceed. A judge could rule on the merits of the case in a hearing or choose to toss out the charge if prosecutors decline to dismiss it.

(Hat tip to Popehat)