AN ACT TO PROVIDE THAT A NON-EXPIRING, PERMANENT CIVIL NO-CONTACT ORDER MAY BE ISSUED AGAINST A SEX OFFENDER ON BEHALF OF THE CRIME VICTIM, TO ESTABLISH THE PROCEDURE FOR OBTAINING SUCH AN ORDER, TO CLARIFY ENHANCED PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS OF PROTECTIVE ORDERS, AND TO ALLOW EXTENSION OF ORDERS ENTERED IN STREET GANG NUISANCE ABATEMENT CASES AFTER A COURT HEARING.
Creates a new GS Chapter 50D,Permanent Civil No-Contact Order Against Sex Offender On Behalf of Crime Victim.
Defines the following terms as they apply in new Chapter 50D:(1) permanent civil no-contact order, a permanent injunction that prohibits a respondent convicted of a sex offense from having any contact with the victim of that offense; (2) respondent, the person who committed the sex offense; (3) sex offense, any criminal offense that requires registration under Article 27A of GS Chapter 14; (4) victim, the person against whom the sex offense was committed.
Establishes the criteria for beginning an action under this chapter. Provides that an action under this chapter may be commenced by filing either (1) a verified complaint for a permanent civil no-contact order in district court or (2) a motion in any existing civil action. Provides that the person who files the action may be the victim of a sex offense that occurs in this state. Also allows a competent adult who resides in this state to file an action under this chapter on behalf of a victim of a sex offense that occurs in this state if the victim is a minor child or an incompetent adult.
Prohibits assessing court costs or attorneys' fees for any filings or service except as provided in GS 1A-1, Rule 11. Permits an action filed under this chapter to be filed in any county permitted under GS 1-82 or where the respondent was convicted of the sex offense. Permits the victim's address to be omitted from all documents filed with the court, providing that the victim states that disclosure of the address would place the victim or a family or household member at risk for further unlawful conduct.
Details the criteria for the serving of process in an action for a permanent civil no-contact order. Requires that a summon be issued and served by the sheriff by personal delivery as provided in Rule 4 of the Rules of Civil Procedure. However, permits service by publication if the respondent cannot with due diligence be personally served by the sheriff. Provides that the court may enter a permanent civil no-contact order by default if the respondent has been served and fails to answer as directed, or fails to appear on any subsequent appearance or hearing date agreed to by the parties or set by the court.
Provides that information as to the prior sexual activity or reputation of the victim is inadmissible in proceedings under this chapter except when such information would be admissible in a criminal prosecution under GS Chapter 8C, Rule 412.
Specifies that all of the following findings are necessary for the court to issue a permanent civil no-contact order: (1) the respondent was convicted of a sex offense against the victim; (2) the victim did not seek a permanent no-contact order under GS 15A-1340.50; (3) there are reasonable grounds for the victim to fear future contact with the respondent; (4) process was properly served on the respondent; and (5) the respondent answered the complaint and notice of hearing was given, or the respondent did not answer the complaint and is in default.
Delineates the seven forms of relief that the court may grant in an order issued under this Chapter. Forms of relief may include ordering the respondent to refrain from entering or remaining present at the victim's residence, school, place of employment, or other specified places at times when the victim is present. Also provides that the court may order other relief it deems necessary and appropriate. Prohibits issuing a permanent civil no-contact order under this chapter without notice to the respondent. Provides that the order issued under this chapter remains effective for the lifetime of the respondent. Directs the clerk of court to deliver a certified copy of a permanent civil no-contact order to the sheriff on the same day that the order is issued. Requires that a copy of the order be promptly issued to the police department of the municipality of the victim's residenceand that the police retain its copy of the order. Provides criteria for serving a respondent who was not present in court when the order was issued. Requires that any order modifying or revoking a permanent civil no-contact order must also be promptly delivered by the clerk of court to the sheriff and served in a manner provided for service of process in this section.
Provides that a victim may file a motion for contempt for a violation on order entered under this chapter.Makes a knowing violation of an order entered under this Chapter a Class A1 misdemeanor. Directs law enforcement to arrest and take a person into custody, with or without a warrant or other process, if the officer has probable cause to believe that the person has knowingly violated a permanent civil no-contact order.
Declares that the remedies provided in this chapter are not exclusive but are in addition to other remedies under law.
Directs the Administrative Office of the Courts to develop appropriate forms to implement the processes provided under new GS Chapter 50D as enacted in this act.
Becomes effective October 1, 2015.
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