Candidate for NC District Court judge, Democrat Crystal Grimes, answers our questions

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Name: Crystal Grimes

District/seat: District 10E, Seat 3 (Wake County)

Political party: Democrat

Age as of March 5, 2024: 45

Campaign website:

Current occupation: Attorney - Public Defender

Professional experience: I have dedicated my entire legal career to public service. Since September 2007, I have worked in the Wake County Public Defender’s Office as an Assistant Public Defender. Initially, I handled misdemeanors encompassing a range of charges from traffic violations to assaults. Over time, I transitioned to managing low-level felony cases, and now, my caseload predominantly comprises mid- to high-level felony cases tried in Superior Court.

Education: UNC-Greensboro, B.A., Media Studies, Magna Cum Laude (May 2000); Campbell University Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law, Juris Doctor (May 2007)

What areas of the law do you have experience in, as a judge or attorney?

Criminal law.

What is your judicial philosophy?

I intend to bring a sense of compassion, fairness, impartiality and integrity to the bench in the pursuit of justice for all of the residents of Wake County. In doing so, it is imperative to listen to every party that appears before me and treat them with respect while applying the applicable law.

Tell us about a specific event in your legal career of which you are most proud.

As a criminal defense attorney, you may think the moment in my legal career I am most proud of is a case that I won after a Superior Court jury trial. However, in thinking about the thousands of cases and clients I have represented over the years, I am most proud of the clients that I have assisted in positively impacting their lives. Those clients that I played a role in helping them through a very serious situation and them being able to turn their lives around.

To what extent should judges be allowed to share their thoughts on political issues in public?

I believe strongly in the First Amendment; however, a judge must adhere to the North Carolina Code of Judicial Conduct in order to ensure that the integrity and independence of the judiciary is preserved.