GREENSBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — The balance of power on the North Carolina Supreme Court has completed its shift.

Republicans claimed a 5-2 majority on the court Tuesday by sweeping both open positions and will have majority control for the first time since the court was made partisan by the General Assembly in 2016.

Associate Justice Sam Ervin IV lost his seat to Republican Curtis “Trey” Allen, general counsel for the NC Administrative Office of the Courts who once was a law clerk for Chief Justice Paul Newby. Allen’s margin was 53% to 47%.

Richard Dietz
Lucy Inman
Sam Ervin IV
Trey Allen

Republican Richard Dietz beat Lucy Inman in a battle of two members of the NC Court of Appeals to replace retiring Democrat Robin Hudson. Dietz earned 53% of the vote.

These results are based on about 95% of precincts reporting and are neither final nor official.

As recently as 2020 the court was dominated by Democrats, 6-1, and even after then Chief Justice Cheri Beasley lost to Newby by 412 votes that November, they had a 4-3 edge on a court whose most significant decisions — such as electoral maps, voting rights and the Leandro school-funding case — often are defined along party lines.

Newby, Dietz and Allen are joined in the majority by Associate Justices Phil Berger Jr. and Tamara Barringer. Anita Earls and Michael Morgan are the Democrats.

Before joining the Court of Appeals in 2014, Republican Richard Dietz was a partner at Kirkpatrick Townsend & Stockton. He was the third-most-senior judge on the 15-member appellate court. Inman had served on the court since 2014 and lost a Supreme Court bid to Berger in 2020.

A native of Robeson County, Allen also is an assistant/associate professor at UNC Chapel Hill. he also served in the Marines.

Court of Appeals

With Dietz and Inman both moving on, the GOP’s could expand its control of the state Court of Appeals as well.

In the Court of Appeals, the GOP also expanded its control by sweeping all four seats on the ballot. Included in that was incumbent Democrat Darren Jackson’s loss for Seat 11 to Michael Stading of Charlotte.

Court of Appeals

  • Seat 8: Julee Tate Flood (R-Holly Springs).
  • Seat 9: Donna Stroud (R-Garner).
  • Seat 10:  John M. Tyson (R- Fayetteville).
  • Seat 11: Michael Stading (R-Charlotte).

Find complete results on Election results page.