NC District Court Judge District 15B Seat 5
The NC District Court hears civil cases involving less than $25,000 and criminal misdemeanors. District Court also oversees juvenile court and the magistrates, which handle things like small claims and evictions.Judges are elected for 4 year terms. Legislation in 2017 changed these elections to partisan elections with no primary. There are 43 districts across the state, most of them either one or two counties.
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Beverly A. Scarlett
What unique personal and professional experiences have prepared you for this judgeship?
What experiences do you bring to the kind of cases likely to come before you in the areas of family law, criminal law and juvenile justice issues?
You are running for a partisan judicial position. What role should the platform of your political party play in your work as a judge on the court?
What do you perceive as the greatest obstacles to justice and do you think there is a role you should play to address these obstacles?
I am a champion for the rights of children and I believe in justice and fairness for all regardless of ones background or station in life.
I have practiced law for 26 years. I began my career in the private practice of law where I worked in criminal and civil courts as well as juvenile court including Abuse, Neglect and Dependency. I closed my practice and was sworn to office as an Assistant District Attorney serving primarily in Orange County. After serving nearly 9 years as a prosecutor, I was sworn to serve as District Court Judge. I have been a judge for more than 13 years. The Judicial District in which I serve is my community of origin and the neighboring county within which I have significant ties.
I have been a juvenile court defense attorney, a prosecutor with full responsibility for Juvenile Delinquency Court, and now a Juvenile Court Judge. I began my career working with juveniles in 1994. Additionally, I have served as an Abuse, Neglect, & Dependency parents’ attorney as well as an Abuse, Neglect, and Dependency Judge. I served nearly five years as our judicial district’s primary Abuse, Neglect & Dependency Judge. While in private practice, I focused on family law, Juvenile Delinquency and Abuse, Neglect & Dependency cases. Also, I handled misdemeanor criminal cases, traffic cases and a few felony drug cases while in private practice. Except for the 9 years I served as a prosecutor, I have worked in the area of family law throughout my career.
I am under oath to administer justice to all fairly regardless of who a person is or their political affiliation. I have done that and I will continue to do so. I believe my job requires me to 1) meet a person where they are when they come into my courtroom; 2) listen to their grievance or defense; 3) apply the law to the facts; 4) issue a ruling that is just and fair to all involved. I am aware when anyone comes into the courtroom for a hearing, it is because a settlement could not be reached. It is unlikely that any party (in a civil matter) will receive everything he or she may ask. Therefore, it is necessary that I listen closely and enter an equitable decision. The political platform of my personal political party is not a factor weighed in any decision that I make.
The lack of resources is the greatest obstacle to justice. I have fought from the time I became a prosecutor to have mental health resources, substance abuse resources, literacy resources, and domestic violence resources available for litigants. I was instrumental in starting our mental health court and our drug court. I started our truancy court for both counties and I sought the permission of my Chief District Court Judge to have domestic violence cases taken off the general criminal docket so needed time and attention could be given to those cases. I have fought strongly to have the appropriate level of mental health treatment available for children in foster case. I have fought strongly to keep survivors and children safe from domestic abuse by laying the foundation for our jurisdiction to establish a Lethality Assessment Protocol. I have requested lethality assessments for cases involving an allegation of attempted strangulation, kidnapping or serious injury. I have attempted to allow survivors time to assess relationship continuity and their personal safety prior to the parties having contact immediately after an incident. It is not uncommon for survivors to be threatened during phone calls from the jail. A survivor may be at greatest risk after law enforcement involvement, therefore care should be taken to ensure safety of the survivor, children & family members.
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