J. Bradley Smith

Top rated Criminal Defense attorney in Charlotte, North Carolina

Arnold & Smith, PLLC
J. Bradley Smith
Arnold & Smith, PLLC

Practice Areas: Criminal Defense, DUI-DWI; view more

Licensed in North Carolina since: 2004

Education: Mercer University Walter F. George School of Law

Selected to Super Lawyers: 2023 Selected to Rising Stars: 2012 - 2017

Arnold & Smith, PLLC

The Historic John Price Carr House
200 North McDowell Street
Charlotte, NC 28204 Visit website


As a founding member of North Carolina law firm Arnold & Smith, PLLC, J. Bradley "Brad" Smith is dedicated to protecting the rights of those accused of crimes. He handles a wide variety of criminal defense cases, including DWI/DUI, felonies and misdemeanors on both the state and federal level. He also handles personal injury, wrongful death, civil rights and police misconduct cases in the Charlotte area.

As a former prosecutor for the Mecklenburg County district attorney's office, Mr. Smith has an invaluable insight into both sides of the courtroom, which has enabled him to build solid defenses for difficult cases that few attorneys in the area can achieve. His reputation has given him the frequent opportunity to provide legal insight for television news media on breaking stories.

After graduating from North Carolina State University in 2001 with a Bachelor of Arts in political science, Mr. Smith earned his Juris Doctor from Mercer University in 2004, where he served as president of the Federalist Society and graduated on the dean's list. He is also a graduate of the distinguished National Trial Advocacy program from the National Advocacy Center. He is admitted to practice law in North Carolina and before the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina.

Mr. Smith has a rating of AV-Preeminent* from Martindale-Hubbell, and has been recognized as a "Top 40 under 40" lawyer and one of the top 100 trial lawyers by the National Trial Lawyers. He is an active member of the North Carolina Advocates for Justice, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the North Carolina Bar Association.

*AV-Preeminent and BV-Distinguished are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell ratings fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

Practice areas

Criminal Defense, Criminal Defense: DUI/DWI

Focus areas

Arrest & Arraignment, Assault & Battery, Criminal Domestic Violence, Criminal Fraud, Criminal Law, DUI/DWI, Drug & Alcohol Violations, Expungement, Felony, Misdemeanor, Motor Vehicle Offenses, Murder, Sex Offenses, Theft, Traffic Violations

  • 70% Criminal Defense
  • 30% Criminal Defense: DUI/DWI

First Admitted: 2004, North Carolina

Professional Webpage: https://www.arnoldsmithlaw.com/j-bradley-smith-esq.html

Educational Background:
  • North Carolina State University, B.A., in Political Science, 2000
Special Licenses/Certifications:
  • National Advocacy Center - Trial Advocacy Program, 2006
Scholarly Lectures/Writings:
  • Led a panel discussion at the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center in Charlotte, NC prior to the opening of "Twelve Angry Men". The focus of the discussion was the jury selection process., Lecturer, 2008
Bar/Professional Activity:
  • Managing Member of Carr Historic Society, LLC, 2008
  • North Carolina State Bar Mecklenburg County, 2004
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • North Carolina Advocates for Justice
  • North Carolina State Bar
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of North Carolina
  • North Carolina Bar Association
  • North Carolina Lawyer’s Weekly created the Emerging Legal Leader award to recognize 20 lawyers across the state of North Carolina, licensed for 10 years or less or are 40 years old or younger, who are making a difference both in the profession and in their communities. A panel of impartial judges reviewed the nominations and selected award winners., NC Emerging Legal Leaders, North Carolina Lawyers Weekly, 2011
  • Charlotte Observer's Readers' Choice Best Lawyer in Charlotte, North Carolina, 1st Place, www.charlotteobserver.com, 2014
  • Dean's List, Mercer University, 2004
  • North Carolina's Weekly Emerging Legal Leaders, 2011
  • Charlotte Observer's Readers' Choice Best Lawyer in Charlotte, North Carolina, 1st Place, www.charlotteobserver.com, 2013
  • National Trial Lawyers Association Top 40 Under 40, 2016, 2016
  • National Trial Lawyers Association Top 100 Trial Lawyers, 2016, 2016

Office location for J. Bradley Smith

The Historic John Price Carr House
200 North McDowell Street
Charlotte, NC 28204

Phone: 704-981-4658


1 Year Super Lawyers
6 Years Rising Stars
  • Super Lawyers: 2023
  • Rising Stars: 2012 - 2017

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