United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina

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United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina
(E.D.N.C.)
Seal of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina.gif
LocationRaleigh
Appeals toFourth Circuit
EstablishedJune 4, 1872
Judges4
Chief JudgeTerrence Boyle
Officers of the court
U.S. AttorneyRobert Higdon Jr.
www.nced.uscourts.gov

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina (in case citations, E.D.N.C.) is the United States District Court that serves the eastern 44 counties in North Carolina. Appeals from the Eastern District of North Carolina are taken to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit (except for patent claims and claims against the U.S. government under the Tucker Act, which are appealed to the Federal Circuit).

Jurisdiction and offices[edit]

The District has three staffed offices and holds court in six cities: Elizabeth City, Fayetteville, Greenville, New Bern, Raleigh, and Wilmington. Its main office is in Raleigh. It is broken down into four divisions. The eastern division is headquartered in Greenville and handles cases from Beaufort, Carteret, Craven, Edgecombe, Greene, Halifax, Hyde, Jones, Lenoir, Martin, Pamlico, and Pitt counties.

The southern division is based in Wilmington and serves the counties of: Bladen, Brunswick, Columbus, Duplin, New Hanover, Onslow, Pender, Robeson, and Sampson. Its cases are heard in Wilmington.

The northern and western divisions are based in Raleigh. The western covers: Cumberland, Franklin, Granville, Harnett, Johnston, Nash, Vance, Wake, Warren, Wayne, and Wilson counties. Its cases are heard in Fayetteville, Greenville, and New Bern. The northern division presides over cases from: Bertie, Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Hertford, Northampton, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Tyrrell and Washington counties. Its cases are heard in Elizabeth City.

History[edit]

The United States District Court for the District of North Carolina was established on June 4, 1790, by 1 Stat. 126.[1][2] On June 9, 1794 it was subdivided into three districts by 1 Stat. 395,[2] but on March 3, 1797, the three districts were abolished and the single District restored by 1 Stat. 517,[2] until April 29, 1802, when the state was again subdivided into three different districts by 2 Stat. 156.[1][2]

In both instances, these districts, unlike those with geographic designations that existed in other states, were titled by the names of the cities in which the courts sat. After the first division, they were styled the District of Edenton, the District of New Bern, and the District of Wilmington; after the second division, they were styled the District of Albemarle, the District of Cape Fear, and the District of Pamptico. However, in both instances, only one judge was authorized to serve all three districts, causing them to effectively operate as a single district.[2] The latter combination was occasionally referred to by the cumbersome title of the United States District Court for the Albemarle, Cape Fear & Pamptico Districts of North Carolina.

On June 4, 1872, North Carolina was re-divided into two Districts, Eastern and Western, by 17 Stat. 215.[2] The presiding judge of the District of North Carolina, George Washington Brooks, was then reassigned to preside over only the Eastern District. The Middle District was created from portions of the Eastern and Western Districts on March 2, 1927, by 44 Stat. 1339.[2]

Current judges[edit]

# Title Judge Duty station Born Term of service Appointed by
Active Chief Senior
12 District Judge Terrence Boyle Elizabeth City 1945 1984–present 2018–present
1997–2004
Reagan
15 District Judge James C. Dever III Raleigh 1962 2005–present 2011–2018 G.W. Bush
14 District Judge Louise W. Flanagan New Bern 1962 2003–present 2004–2011 G.W. Bush
16 District Judge vacant
10 Senior Judge William Earl Britt Raleigh 1932 1980–1997 1983–1990 1997–present Carter
11 Senior Judge James Carroll Fox Wilmington 1928 1982–2001 1990–1997 2001–present Reagan
13 Senior Judge Malcolm Jones Howard Greenville 1939 1988–2005 2005–present Reagan

Vacancies and pending nominations[edit]

Seat Seat Last Held By Vacancy Reason Date of Vacancy Nominee Date of Nomination
5 Malcolm Jones Howard Senior status December 31, 2005 Thomas Alvin Farr January 8, 2018

Former judges[edit]

# Judge State Born–died Active service Chief Judge Senior status Appointed by Reason for
termination
1 George Washington Brooks NC 1821–1882 1865–1882[3][4] A. Johnson death
2 Augustus Sherrill Seymour NC 1836–1897 1882–1897 Arthur death
3 Thomas Richard Purnell NC 1847–1908 1897–1908 McKinley death
4 Henry G. Connor NC 1852–1924 1908–1924 Taft death
5 Isaac Melson Meekins NC 1875–1946 1925–1945 1945–1946 Coolidge death
6 Donnell Gilliam NC 1889–1960 1945–1959 1959–1960 Truman death
7 Algernon Lee Butler NC 1905–1978 1959–1975 1961–1975 1975–1978 Eisenhower death
8 John Davis Larkins Jr. NC 1909–1990 1961–1979 1975–1979 1979–1990 Kennedy death
9 Franklin Taylor Dupree Jr. NC 1913–1995 1970–1983 1979–1983 1983–1995 Nixon death

Chief judges[edit]

Chief judges have administrative responsibilities with respect to their district court. Unlike the Supreme Court, where one justice is specifically nominated to be chief, the office of chief judge rotates among the district court judges. To be chief, a judge must have been in active service on the court for at least one year, be under the age of 65, and have not previously served as chief judge. A vacancy is filled by the judge highest in seniority among the group of qualified judges. The chief judge serves for a term of seven years or until age 70, whichever occurs first. The age restrictions are waived if no members of the court would otherwise be qualified for the position.

When the office was created in 1948, the chief judge was the longest-serving judge who had not elected to retire on what has since 1958 been known as senior status or declined to serve as chief judge. After August 6, 1959, judges could not become or remain chief after turning 70 years old. The current rules have been in operation since October 1, 1982.

Succession of seats[edit]

U.S. Attorneys for the Eastern District[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Asbury Dickens, A Synoptical Index to the Laws and Treaties of the United States of America (1852), p. 389.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g U.S. District Courts of North Carolina, Legislative history, Federal Judicial Center.
  3. ^ Recess appointment; Johnson appointed him on August 19, 1865. He was confirmed by the Senate on January 22, 1866, and received commission on January 22, 1866.
  4. ^ Seat reassigned from the Districts of North Carolina on June 4, 1872.
  5. ^ "Eastern District of North Carolina - USAO - Department of Justice". www.justice.gov.

External links[edit]