Bill Summaries: S458 GOOD SAMARITAN LAW.

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  • Summary date: Mar 30 2023 - View Summary

    Repeals GS 90-96.2 (pertaining to limited immunity for drug-related overdose treatment) and makes conforming change to GS 14-18.4(f) (Samaritan protection) to refer to new GS 90-96.3.

    Enacts GS 90-96.3 providing for limited immunity for certain covered crimes that relate to overdose treatment. Defines protected person as any person who (1) requests medical assistance for themselves or another person experiencing an overdose, (2) is the subject of that request, or (3) is at the scene of an overdose where medical assistance has been requested. Defines covered crimes as an offense that qualifies for immunity described in GS 90-96.3, which includes:

    • GS 90-95 (NC Controlled Substances Act [NCCSA])
    • GS 90-95.1 (Continuing criminal enterprise-NCCSA)
    • GS 90-113.22 (possession of drug paraphernalia)
    • GS 90-113.23 (manufacture or delivery of drug paraphernalia)
    • GS 90-98 (attempt and conspiracy under the NCCSA) in connection with a covered crime
    • GS 90-108 (NCSA)
    • GS 14-18.4 (death by distribution of certain controlled substances)
    • GS 18B-302 (sale to or purchase of alcoholic beverages by underage persons)
    • A nonviolent misdemeanor or nonviolent felony as defined in GS 15A-145.5(a) (expungable offenses)

    Also defines overdose. Specifies that a protected person will not be arrested, charged, prosecuted, or subject to any criminal penalty for a violation of any covered crime, nor will they be arrested or detained on an outstanding warrant for a covered crime, if either of the following conditions is met: (1) the grounds for arrest, charge, prosecution, detention, or other penalty were obtained because of a request for assistance for a person experiencing an  overdose or (2) the identity of the protected person is learned because of a request for assistance for an individual experiencing an overdose. Further specifies that if those conditions are met, then a protected person is not in violation of the conditions of any restraining order or protective order, pretrial release, probation, parole, or post-release supervision. Allows for the court to consider those grounds as mitigating factors in a criminal prosecution of a protected person where immunity is not available. In addition to any other immunity available at law, provides immunity from civil liability for the arrest or filing of charges for law enforcement officers who, acting in good faith, arrest or charge a person who thereafter is determined to be entitled to immunity. Clarifies that the statute is not intended to: (1) limit the admissibility of evidence obtained in connection with the investigation and prosecution of any offense other than a covered crime; (2) limit any seizure of evidence or contraband otherwise permitted by law; and (3) limit or abridge the authority of a law enforcement officer to detain or take into custody a protected person in the course of an investigation of, or to effectuate an arrest for, any offense other than a covered crime.

    Effective October 1, 2023, and applies to acts or omissions on or after that date.