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Abuse laws North Carolina


Abuse Laws
North Carolina

2001

Abuse laws North Carolina

Note: This page features auto-scrolling links by statute.

Chapter 50B Domestic Violence:

Chapter 14 Criminal Law. Article 7A. Rape and Other Sex Offenses

Chapter 14 Criminal Law. -- § 14-277.3. Stalking.

Abuse laws North Carolina


Chapter 50B. Domestic Violence.

§ 50B-1. Domestic violence; definition. (a) Domestic violence means the commission of one or more of the following acts upon an aggrieved party or upon a minor child residing with or in the custody of the aggrieved party by a person with whom the aggrieved party has or has had a personal relationship, but does not include acts of self-defense:
       (1) Attempting to cause bodily injury, or intentionally causing bodily injury; or
       (2) Placing the aggrieved party or a member of the aggrieved party's family or household in fear of imminent serious bodily injury; or
       (3) Committing any act defined in G.S. 14-27.2 through G.S. 14-27.7.
  (b) For purposes of this section, the term "personal relationship" means a relationship wherein the parties involved:
       (1) Are current or former spouses;
       (2) Are persons of opposite sex who live together or have lived together;
       (3) Are related as parents and children, including others acting in loco parentis to a minor child, or as grandparents and grandchildren. For purposes of this subdivision, an aggrieved party may not obtain an order of protection against a child or grandchild under the age of 16;
      (4) Have a child in common;
      (5) Are current or former household members;
      (6) Are persons of the opposite sex who are in a dating relationship or have been in a dating relationship. For purposes of this subdivision, a dating relationship is one wherein the parties are romantically involved over time and on a continuous basis during the course of the relationship. A casual acquaintance or ordinary fraternization between persons in a business or social context is not a dating relationship.
(1979, c. 561, s. 1; 1985, c. 113, s. 1; 1987, c. 828; 1987 (Reg. Sess., 1988), c. 893, ss. 1, 3; 1995 (Reg. Sess., 1996), c. 591, s. 1; 1997-471, s. 1.)

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Abuse laws North Carolina

§ 50B-2. Institution of civil action; motion for emergencyrelief; temporary orders. (a) Any person residing in this State may seek relief under this Chapter by filing a civil action or by filing a motion in any existing action filed under Chapter 50 of the General Statutes alleging acts of domestic violence against himself orherself or a minor child who resides with or is in the custody of such person. Any aggrieved party entitled to relief under this Chapter may file a civil action and proceed pro se, without the assistance of legal counsel. The district court division of theGeneral Court of Justice shall have original jurisdiction overactions instituted under this Chapter.
   (b) Emergency Relief. -- A party may move the court for emergency relief if he or she believes there is a danger of serious and immediate injury to himself or herself or a minor child. A hearing on a motion for emergency relief, where no ex parte order is entered, shall be held after five days' notice ofthe hearing to the other party or after five days from the date of service of process on the other party, whichever occurs first, provided, however, that no hearing shall be required if the service of process is not completed on the other party. If the party is proceeding pro se and does not request an ex parte hearing, the clerk shall set a date for hearing and issue a notice of hearing within the time periods provided in this subsection, and shall effect service of the summons, complaint,notice, and other papers through the appropriate law enforcement agency where the defendant is to be served, upon payment of therequired service fees.
   (c) Ex Parte Orders. -- Prior to the hearing, if it clearly appears to the court from specific facts shown, that there is a danger of acts of domestic violence against the aggrieved partyor a minor child, the court may enter such orders as it deems necessary to protect the aggrieved party or minor children from such acts provided, however, that a temporary order for custody ex parte and prior to service of process and notice shall not be entered unless the court finds that the child is exposed to a substantial risk of bodily injury or sexual abuse. Upon the issuance of an ex parte order under this subsection, a hearing shall be held within 10 days from the date of issuance of the order or within seven days from the date of service of process on the other party, whichever occurs later. If an aggrieved party acting pro se requests ex parte relief, the clerk of superior court shall schedule an ex parte hearing with the district courtdivision of the General Court of Justice within 72 hours of thefiling for said relief, or by the end of the next day on which the district court is in session in the county in which the action was filed, whichever shall first occur. If the district court is not in session in said county, the aggrieved party may contact the clerk of superior court in any other county within the same judicial district who shall schedule an ex parte hearing with the district court division of the General Court of Justice by the end of the next day on which said court division is in session in that county. Upon the issuance of an ex parte order under this subsection, if the party is proceeding pro se, the Clerk shall set a date for hearing and issue a notice of hearing within the time periods provided in this subsection, and shall effect service of the summons, complaint, notice, order and otherpapers through the appropriate law enforcement agency where thedefendant is to be served, upon payment of the required service fees.
     (c1) Ex Parte Orders by Authorized Magistrate. -- The chief district court judge may authorize a magistrate or magistrates to hear any motions for emergency relief ex parte. Prior to the hearing, if the magistrate determines that at the time the party is seeking emergency relief ex parte the district court is not insession and a district court judge is not and will not be available to hear the motion for a period of four or more hours, the motion may be heard by the magistrate. If it clearly appears to the magistrate from specific facts shown that there is a danger of acts of domestic violence against the aggrieved partyor a minor child, the magistrate may enter such orders as it deems necessary to protect the aggrieved party or minor children from such acts, except that a temporary order for custody ex parte and prior to service of process and notice shall not be entered unless the magistrate finds that the child is exposed to a substantial risk of bodily injury or sexual abuse. An ex parte order entered under this subsection shall expire and the magistrate shall schedule an ex parte hearing before a district court judge within 72 hours of the filing for relief under this subsection, or by the end of the next day on which the district court is in session in the county in which the action was filed, whichever occurs first. A party who has paid court costs due for seeking an order from the magistrate under this subsection shall not be liable for court costs for a hearing before the district court judge scheduled and heard pursuant to an order entered bythe magistrate under this subsection. Ex parte orders entered bythe district court judge pursuant to this subsection shall be entered and scheduled in accordance with subsection (c) of this section.
     (c2) The authority granted to authorized magistrates toaward temporary child custody pursuant to subsection (c1) of this section and pursuant to G.S. 50B-3(a)(4) is granted subject tocustody rules to be established by the supervising chief district judge of each judicial district.
   (d) Pro Se Forms. -- The clerk of superior court of each county shall provide to pro se complainants all forms which are necessary or appropriate to enable them to proceed pro se pursuant to this section. The Clerk shall provide a supply of pro se forms to authorized magistrates who shall make the forms available to complainants seeking relief under subsection (c1) of this section.
(1979, c. 561, s. 1; 1985, c. 113, ss. 2, 3; 1987 (Reg. Sess., 1988), c. 893, s. 2; 1989, c. 461, s. 1; 1994, Ex.Sess., c. 4, s. 1; 1997-471, s. 2.)

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§ 50B-3. Relief. (a) The court, including magistrates as authorized under G.S. 50B-2(c1), may grant any protective order or approve any consent agreement to bring about a cessation of acts of domestic violence. The orders or agreements may:
      (1) Direct a party to refrain from such acts;
      (2) Grant to a party possession of the residence or household of the parties and exclude the other party from the residence or household;
      (3) Require a party to provide a spouse and his or her children suitable alternate housing;
      (4) Award temporary custody of minor children and establish temporary visitation rights;
      (5) Order the eviction of a party from the residence or household and assistance to the victim in returning to it;
      (6) Order either party to make payments for the support of a minor child as required by law;
      (7) Order either party to make payments for the support of a spouse as required by law;
      (8) Provide for possession of personal property of the parties;
      (9) Order a party to refrain from doing any or all of the following:
                a. Threatening, abusing, or following the other party,
                b. Harassing the other party, including by telephone, visiting the home or workplace, or other means, or
                c. Otherwise interfering with the other party;
      (10) Award costs and attorney's fees to either party;
      (11) Prohibit a party from purchasing a firearm for a time fixed in the order;
      (12) Order any party the court finds is responsible for acts of domestic violence to attend and complete an abuser treatment program if the program is available within a reasonable distance of that party's residence and is approved by the Department of Administration; and
      (13) Include any additional prohibitions or requirements the court deems necessary to protect any party or any minor child.
    (b) Protective orders entered or consent orders approved pursuant to this Chapter shall be for a fixed period of time no tto exceed one year. Upon application of the aggrieved party, a judge may renew the original or any succeeding order for up to one additional year. Protective orders entered or consent orders approved shall not be mutual in nature except where both parties file a claim and the court makes detailed findings of fact indicating that both parties acted as aggressors, that neither party acted primarily in self-defense, and that the right of each party to due process is preserved.
   (c) A copy of any order entered and filed under this Article shall be issued to each party. In addition, a copy of the order shall be issued promptly to and retained by the police department of the city of the victim's residence. If the victim does not reside in a city or resides in a city with no police department, copies shall be issued promptly to and retained by the sheriff, and the county police department, if any, of the county in which the victim resides.
   (d) The sheriff of the county where a domestic violence order is entered shall provide for prompt entry of the order into the National Crime Information Center registry and shall provide for access of such orders to magistrates on a 24-hour-a-day basis. Modifications, terminations, and dismissals of the order shall also be promptly entered.
(1979, c. 561, s. 1; 1985, c. 463; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 4,s. 2; 1995, c. 527, s. 1; 1995 (Reg. Sess., 1996), c. 591, s. 2;c. 742, s. 42.1.) (As amended by 1999-2000 session of General Assembly.)

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Abuse laws North Carolina

§ 50B-4. Enforcement of orders. (a) A party may file a motion for contempt for violation of any order entered pursuant to this Chapter. This party may file and proceed with thatmotion pro se, using forms provided by the clerk of superior court or a magistrate authorized under G.S. 50B-2(c1). Upon the filing pro se of a motion for contempt under this subsection, the clerk, or the authorized magistrate, if the facts show clearly that there is danger of acts of domestic violence against the aggrieved party or a minor child and the motion is made at a time when the clerkis not available, shall schedule and issue notice of a show cause hearing with the district court division of the General Court of Justice at the earliest possible date pursuant to G.S. 5A-23. The Clerk, or the magistrate in the case of notice issued by the magistrate pursuant to this subsection, shall effect service of the motion, notice, and other papers through the appropriate law enforcement agency where the defendant is to be served, uponpayment of the required service fees.
    (b) Repealed (session 1999-2000)
    (c) A valid protective order entered pursuant to this section shall be enforced by all North Carolina law enforcement agencies without further order of the court.
    (d) A valid protective order entered by the courts of another state or the courts of an Indian tribe shall be accorded full faith and credit by the courts of North Carolina whether or not the order has been registered and shall be enforced by the courts and the law enforcement agencies of North Carolina. Carolina as if it were an order issued by a North Carolina court. In determining the validity of an out-of-state order for purposes of enforcement, a law enforcement officer may rely upon a copy of the protective order issued by another state or the courts of an Indian tribe that is provided to the officer and on the statement of a person protected by the order that the order remains in effect. Even though registration is not required, a copy of a protective order may be registered in North Carolina by filing with the clerk of superior court in any county a copy of the order and an affidavit by a person protected by the order that to the best of that person's knowledge the order is presently in effect as written. Notice of the registration shall not be given to the defendant. Upon registration of the order, the clerk shall promptly forward a copy to the sheriff of that county. Unless the issuing state has already entered the order, the sheriff shall provide for prompt entry of the order into the National Crime Information Center registry pursuant to G.S. 50B-3(d).
   (e) Upon application or motion by a party to the court, the court shall determine whether an out-of-state order remains in full force and effect.
(1979, c. 561, s.1; 1985, c. 113, s. 4; 1987, c. 739, s. 6; 1989, c. 461, s. 2;1994, Ex. Sess., c. 4, s. 3; 1995 (Reg. Sess., 1996), c. 591, s.3.) (As amended by 1999-2000 session of General Assembly.)

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§ 50B-4.1. Violation of valid protective order a misdemeanor. (a) A person who knowingly violates a valid protective order entered pursuant to this Chapter or by the courts of another state or the courts of an Indian tribe shall be guilty of a Class A1 misdemeanor.
    (b) A law enforcement officer shall arrest and take a person into custody without a warrant or other process if the officer has probable cause to believe that the person knowingly has violated a valid protective order excluding the person from the residence or household occupied by a victim of domestic violence or directing the person to refrain from doing any or all of the acts specified in G.S. 50B-3(a)(9).
    (c) When a law enforcement officer makes an arrest under this section without a warrant, and the party arrested contests that the out-of-state order or the order issued by an Indian court remains in full force and effect, the party arrested shall be promptly provided with a copy of the information applicable to the party which appears on the National Crime Information Center registry by the sheriff of the county in which the arrest occurs. (As amended by 1999-2000 session of General Assembly.)

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Abuse laws North Carolina

§ 50B-4.2. False statement regarding protective order a misdemeanor.A person who knowingly makes a false statement to a law enforcement agency or officer that a protective order entered pursuant to this Chapter or by the courts of another state or Indian tribe remains in effect shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor. (As amended by 1999-2000 session of General Assembly.)

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Abuse laws North Carolina

§ 50B-5. Emergency assistance. (a) A person who alleges that he or she or a minor child has been the victim of domestic violence may request the assistance of a local law enforcement agency. The local law enforcement agency shall respond to the request for assistance as soon as practicable. The local law enforcement officer responding to the request for assistance may take whatever steps are reasonably necessary to protect the complainant from harm and may advise the complainant of sources of shelter, medical care, counseling and other services. Upon request by the complainant and where feasible, the law enforcement officer may transport the complainant to appropriate facilities such as hospitals, magistrates' offices, or public or private facilities for shelter and accompany the complainant to his or her residence, within the jurisdiction in which the request for assistance was made, so that the complainant may remove food, clothing, medication and such other personal property as is reasonably necessary to enable the complainant and any minor children who are presently in the care of the complainant to remain elsewhere pending further proceedings. (As amended by 1999-2000 session of General Assembly.
    (b) In providing the assistance authorized by subsection (a), no officer may be held criminally or civilly liable on account of reasonable measures taken under authority ofsubsection (a).    (1979, c. 561, s. 1; 1985, c. 113, s. 5.)

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Abuse laws North Carolina

§ 50B-6. Construction of Chapter. This Chapter shall not be construed as granting a status to any person for any purpose other than those expressly stated herein. This Chapter shall not be construed as relieving any person or institution of the duty to report to the department of social services, as required by G.S. 7A-543, if the person orinstitution has cause to suspect that a juvenile is abused orneglected.
(1979, c. 561, s. 1; 1985, c. 113, s. 6.)

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Abuse laws and abuse shelters North Carolina

§ 50B-7. Remedies not exclusive. The remedies provided by this Chapter are not exclusive but are additional to remedies provided under Chapter 50 and elsewhere in the General Statutes.    (1979, c. 561, s. 1.)

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Abuse laws and abuse shelters North Carolina

§ 50B-8. Effect upon prosecution for violation of § 14-184 or other offense against public morals. The granting of a protective order, approval of a consent agreement, prosecution for violation of this Chapter, or the granting of any other relief or the institution of any other enforcement proceedings under this Chapter shall not be construed to afford a defense to any person or persons charged with fornication and adultery under G.S. 14-184 or charged with any other offense against the public morals; and prosecution,conviction, or prosecution and conviction for violation of any provision of this Chapter shall not be a bar to prosecution forviolation of G.S. 14-184 or of any other statute defining an offense or offenses against the public morals.
(1979, c. 561, s.1.)

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Abuse laws and abuse shelters North Carolina

§ 50B-9. Domestic Violence Center Fund. The Domestic Violence Center Fund is established within the State Treasury. The fund shall be administered by the Departmentof Administration, North Carolina Council for Women, and shall beused to make grants to centers for victims of domestic violence and to The North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Inc. This fund shall be administered in accordance with the provisions of the Executive Budget Act. The Department of Administration shall make quarterly grants to each eligible domestic violence center and to The North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Inc. Each grant recipient shall receive the same amount. To be eligible to receive funds under this section, a domestic violence center must meet the following requirements:
      (1) It shall have been in operation on the preceding July 1 and shall continue to be in operation.
      (2) It shall offer all of the following services: a hotline, transportation services, community education programs, daytime services, and call forwarding during the night and it shall fulfill other criteria established by the Department of Administration.
      (3) It shall be a nonprofit corporation or a local governmental entity.
(1991, c. 693, s. 3; 1991 (Reg. Sess., 1992), c. 988, s. 1.)

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Abuse laws and abuse shelters North Carolina


Rape and Other Sex Offenses
G.S. 14-27.2 - G.S. 14-27.7, as referenced in 50B-1(a)(3):

§ 14-27.2. First-degree rape. (a) A person is guilty of rape in the first degree if the person engages in vaginal intercourse: (1) With a victim who is a child under the age of 13 years and the defendant is at least 12 years old and is at least four years older than the victim; or (2) With another person by force and against the will of the other person, and: a. Employs or displays a dangerous or deadly weapon or an article which the other person reasonably believes to be a dangerous or deadly weapon; or b. Inflicts serious personal injury upon the victim or another person; or c. The person commits the offense aided and abetted by one or more other persons. (b) Any person who commits an offense defined in this section is guilty of a Class B1 felony. (1979, c. 682, s. 1; 1979, 2nd Sess., c. 1316, s. 4; 1981, c. 106, ss. 1, 2; 1983, c. 175, ss. 4, 10; c. 720, s. 4; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 22, s. 2.)

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§ 14-27.3. Second-degree rape. (a) A person is guilty of rape in the second degree if the person engages in vaginal intercourse with another person: (1) By force and against the will of the other person; or (2) Who is mentally defective, mentally incapacitated, or physically helpless, and the person performing the act knows or should reasonably know the other person is mentally defective, mentally incapacitated, or physically helpless. (b) Any person who commits the offense defined in this section is guilty of a Class C felony. (1979, c. 682, s. 1; 1979, 2nd Sess., c. 1316, s. 5; 1981, cc. 63, 179; 1993, c. 539, s. 1130; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c).)

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§ 14-27.4. First-degree sexual offense. (a) A person is guilty of a sexual offense in the first degree if the person engages in a sexual act: (1) With a victim who is a child under the age of 13 years and the defendant is at least 12 years old and is at least four years older than the victim; or (2) With another person by force and against the will of the other person, and: a. Employs or displays a dangerous or deadly weapon or an article which the other person reasonably believes to be a dangerous or deadly weapon; or b. Inflicts serious personal injury upon the victim or another person; or c. The person commits the offense aided and abetted by one or more other persons. (b) Any person who commits an offense defined in this section is guilty of a Class B1 felony. (1979, c. 682, s. 1; 1979, 2nd Sess., c. 1316, s. 6; 1981, c. 106, ss. 3, 4; 1983, c. 175, ss. 5, 10; c. 720, s. 4; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 22, s. 3.)

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§ 14-27.5. Second-degree sexual offense. (a) A person is guilty of a sexual offense in the second degree if the person engages in a sexual act with another person: (1) By force and against the will of the other person; or (2) Who is mentally defective, mentally incapacitated, or physically helpless, and the person performing the act knows or should reasonably know that the other person is mentally defective, mentally incapacitated, or physically helpless. (b) Any person who commits the offense defined in this section is guilty of a Class C felony. (1979, c. 682, s. 1; 1979, 2nd Sess., c. 1316, s. 7; 1981, c. 63, c. 179, s. 14; 1993, c. 539, s. 1131; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c).)

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§ 14-27.6: Repealed by Session Laws 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 14, s. 71(3).

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§ 14-27.7. Intercourse and sexual offenses with certain victims; consent no defense. (a) If a defendant who has assumed the position of a parent in the home of a minor victim engages in vaginal intercourse or a sexual act with a victim who is a minor residing in the home, or if a person having custody of a victim of any age or a person who is an agent or employee of any person, or institution, whether such institution is private, charitable, or governmental, having custody of a victim of any age engages in vaginal intercourse or a sexual act with such victim, the defendant is guilty of a Class E felony. Consent is not a defense to a charge under this section. (b) If a defendant, who is a teacher, school administrator, student teacher, or coach, at any age, or who is other school personnel, and who is at least four years older than the victim engages in vaginal intercourse or a sexual act with a victim who is a student, at any time during or after the time the defendant and victim were present together in the same school, but before the victim ceases to be a student, the defendant is guilty of a Class G felony, except when the defendant is lawfully married to the student. The term "same school" means a school at which the student is enrolled and the school personnel is employed or volunteers. A defendant who is school personnel, other than a teacher, school administrator, student teacher, or coach, and is less than four years older than the victim and engages in vaginal intercourse or a sexual act with a victim who is a student, is guilty of a Class A1 misdemeanor. This subsection shall apply unless the conduct is covered under some other provision of law providing for greater punishment. Consent is not a defense to a charge under this section. For purposes of this subsection, the terms "school", "school personnel", and "student" shall have the same meaning as in G.S. 14-202.4(d). (1979, c. 682, s. 1; 1979, 2nd Sess., c. 1316, s. 9; 1981, c. 63; c. 179, s. 14; 1993, c. 539, s. 1132; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c); 1999-300, s. 2.)

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§ 14-277.3. Stalking. (a) Offense. -- A person commits the offense of stalking if the person willfully on more than one occasion follows or is in the presence of another person without legal purpose and with the intent to cause death or bodily injury or with the intent to cause emotional distress by placing that person in reasonable fear of death or bodily injury.
    (b) Classification. -- A violation of this section is a Class 1 misdemeanor. A person who commits the offense of stalking when there is a court order in effect prohibiting similar behavior is guilty of a Class A1 misdemeanor. A second or subsequent conviction for stalking occurring within five years of a prior conviction of the same defendant is punishable as a Class I felony. (1991 (Reg. Sess., 1992), c. 804, s. 1; 1993, c. 539, s. 173; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c); 1997-306, s. 1.)

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