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William Joseph Kennedy III

also known as Joe Kennedy

About me

SUMMARY:  Joe Kennedy is a former prosecutor who has successfully handled tens of thousands of criminal cases, including hundreds of DWI trials. He has attended concentrated training courses in a variety of areas, including the Intox EC/IR II (Intoximeter) Operator School Conducted by the NC Department of Health and Human Services, as well as DWI Detection & Standardized Field Sobriety Testing promulgated by NHTSA.  He has also attended the Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE) promulgated by NHTSA.


Joe Kennedy has lived in Carteret County since 2009 and resides in Morehead City with his wife, Natalie. Prior to joining Cummings & Cummings in June of 2012, Joe prosecuted thousands of criminal and traffic cases, including hundreds of Driving While Impaired offenses for District Attorney Scott Thomas in the district’s Beaufort office. Joe attended concentrated training in a variety of areas, including the Intox EC/IR II (Intoximeter) Operator School Conducted by the NC Department of Health and Human Services. As a prosecutor, Joe studied the strategies and tactics of elders in the criminal defense bar, while learning valuable lessons from seasoned law enforcement professionals. He also met his wife, Natalie, who was then employed as a Special Agent with the NC Department of Public Safety’s Alcohol Law Enforcement Division.

While employed as a prosecutor, Joe also served on the adjunct faculty at Carteret Community College and taught classes in Criminal Law and Constitutional Law.  Joe still serves on the College’s Board of Law and Technology.

Prior to joining the District Attorney’s office in April of 2010, Joe was a private solo practitioner and concentrated his practice exclusively in the area of criminal defense.

Joe gained admission to the North Carolina State Bar in 2006, the same year that he graduated from Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law. Joe graduated in the top 20% of his class and earned a spot on the Dean’s List every semester. While At Cumberland, Joe was president of the school's Federalist Society chapter and North Carolina student Bar Association.

While in law school, Joe interned as a Civilian Summer Law Clerk at the Joint Law Center aboard Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point.  That experience gave him an appreciation for the unique legal issues that face the men and women in uniform who are stationed near the Crystal Coast.  

Joe received his BA in Journalism and Mass Communication from UNC Chapel Hill in 2000. While at Chapel Hill, Joe was a member and treasurer of the Upsilon Chapter of Kappa Alpha Order.  Joe also interned with (then) Congressman Richard Burr’s Washington, DC office.  After graduation, Joe worked in Raleigh and Charlotte, North Carolina before attending law school.

Joe is a member of the Carteret County Bar, District 3-B Bar, N.C. Bar Association and North Carolina Academy of Trial Lawyers. He limits his practice Criminal, DWI and Traffic law to ensure that his clients get the maximum amount of attention and resources for the best possible outcome.  When not at work, he enjoys boating, hunting and fishing with his wife, Natalie, and Labrador Retriever, Boone.


Languages spoken: English, Spanish

Practice areas


  1. DUI & DWI: 45%
    10 years
  2. Criminal Defense: 45%
    10 years
  3. Speeding Ticket: 10%
    10 years



Fixed (always), Free consultation (30 minutes)

Payment types:

Cash, Check, Credit card

Attorney endorsements

4 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Russell Clayton Alexander

    Joe Kennedy is a highly skilled attorney in the areas of traffic law and criminal defense. He is a zealous and effective advocate for his clients. I recommend him without hesitation.


    Russell Alexander Litigation Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

  • Cecil S. Harvell

    I endorse this lawyer. Joe is a fine and strong addition to our professional community and we are fortunate that he has chosen Carteret County as home for his family. It is without reservation that I refer clients to Joe.


    Cecil Harvell Probate Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

Contact info

Cummings & Kennedy Law Firm, PLLC

613 Cedar St
Ste. A
Beaufort, NC, 28516-1901


We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Top 10 Under 40National Academy of Criminal Defense Attorneys2015
Superior DWI AttorneyNational Advocacy for DUI Defense2015
2015 Premier 100 Trial AttorneyAmerican Academy of Trial Attorneys2015
2015 Client Satisfaction AwardAmerican Institute of DUI/DWI Attorneys2015
Clients' Choice AwardAVVO2015
AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review RatedMartindale-Hubbell2015
Clients' Choice AwardAVVO2014
Superior DWI AttorneyNational Advocacy for DUI Defense2014
Clients' Choice AwardAVVO2013
Dean's ListCumberland School of Law2006
Scholar of Merit: Sea, Ocean & Coastal LawCumberland School Of Law2006
Dean's ListCumberland School of Law2005
Dean's ListCumberland School of Law2004
Dean's ListCumberland School of Law2003
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
MemberCummings & Kennedy Law Firm, PLLC2014 - Present
Associate AttorneyCummings & Cummings, PLLC2012 - 2014
Adjunct ProfessorCarteret Community College2011 - 2012
Assistant District AttorneyState Of North Carolina2010 - 2012
Member / ManagerLaw Office of Joe Kennedy, PLLC2009 - 2010
Associate AttorneyBrock & Scott, PLLC2006 - 2009
Civilian Summer Law ClerkMcas Cherry Point2005 - 2005
Association namePosition nameDuration
DUI Defense Lawyers AssociationMember2015 - Present
3B Judicial Bar AssociationTreasurer/Secretary2015 - Present
National College of DUI DefenseMember2015 - Present
National Advocacy for DUI DefenseMember2014 - Present
Connect Carteret Steering CommitteeMember2014 - Present
North Carolina Advocates for JusticeMember2012 - Present
Carteret Community College Law & Technology Advisory BoardMember2011 - Present
Carteret County Bar AssociationMember2009 - Present
3B Judicial Bar AssociationMember2009 - Present
North Carolina Bar AssociationMember2007 - Present
North Carolina State BarMember2006 - Present
North Carolina Student Bar Association - Cumberland ChapterPresident2005 - 2006
Federalist Society Cumberland ChapterPresident2005 - 2006
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Samford University, Cumberland School of LawLawJD2006
University of North Carolina, Chapel HillJournalism and Mass CommunicationBA - Bachelor of Arts2000
West Forsyth High SchoolN/AHigh School Diploma1996
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Introduction to Criminal Justice - BLET Bridgeway ProgramState & Federal Court System2016
NC Teen Court 17th Annual Summit EventScoring Judge - Mock Trial Competition2015