North Carolina Criminal Lawyer: The Crime of Suicide

Historically, suicide – if unsuccessful – was punishable as a crime. Actually, in Europe, a person who committed suicide could be “punished” by being denied a burial in a typical cemetery and by having at least some of his property go to the King.

At common law, in North Carolina, suicide remained a crime. However, North Carolina has abolished that law, and so people who attempt suicide and fail are not punished as criminals.

Here’s the statute:

N.C.G.S. 14-17.1. Crime of suicide abolished.
The common-law crime of suicide is hereby abolished as an offense.

Damon Chetson

Damon Chetson is a Board Certified Specialist in State and Federal Criminal Law. He represents people charged with serious and minor offenses in Raleigh, Wake County, and the Eastern District of North Carolina. Call (919) 352-9411.