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Legal Statutes: North Carolina

UPDATED August 17, 2016

North Carolina Statutes

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Chapter 50B. Domestic Violence

back to top50B-4.1. Violation of valid protective order

(a) Except as otherwise provided by law, a person who knowingly violates a valid protective order entered pursuant to this Chapter or who knowingly violates a valid protective order entered 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, with or 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.


(d) Unless covered under some other provision of law providing greater punishment, a person who commits a felony at a time when the person knows the behavior is prohibited by a valid protective order as provided in subsection (a) of this section shall be guilty of a felony one class higher than the principal felony described in the charging document. This subsection shall not apply to convictions of a Class A or B1 felony or to convictions of the offenses set forth in subsection (f) or subsection (g) of this section.


(e) An indictment or information that charges a person with committing felonious conduct as described in subsection (d) of this section shall also allege that the person knowingly violated a valid protective order as described in subsection (a) of this section in the course of the conduct constituting the underlying felony. In order for a person to be punished as described in subsection (d) of this section, a finding shall be made that the person knowingly violated the protective order in the course of conduct constituting the underlying felony.


(f) Unless covered under some other provision of law providing greater punishment, any person who knowingly violates a valid protective order as provided in subsection (a) of this section, after having been previously convicted of two offenses under this Chapter, shall be guilty of a Class H felony.


(g) Unless covered under some other provision of law providing greater punishment, any person who, while in possession of a deadly weapon on or about his or her person or within close proximity to his or her person, knowingly violates a valid protective order as provided in subsection (a) of this section by failing to stay away from a place, or a person, as so directed under the terms of the order, shall be guilty of a Class H felony.

(g1) Unless covered under some other provision of law providing greater punishment, any person who is subject to a valid protective order, as provided in subsection (a) of this section, who enters property operated as a safe house or haven for victims of domestic violence, where a person protected under the order is residing, shall be guilty of a Class H felony. A person violates this subsection regardless of whether the person protected under the order is present on the property.

(h) For the purposes of this section, the term “valid protective order” shall include an emergency or ex parte order entered under this Chapter.

S.L. 1997-471, § 3. Amended by S.L. 1997-456, § 27, eff. Dec. 1, 1997; S.L. 1999-23, § 4, eff. Dec. 1, 1999; S.L. 2001-518, § 5, eff. March 1, 2002; S.L. 2007-190, § 1, eff. Dec. 1, 2007; S.L. 2008-93, § 1, eff. Dec. 1, 2008; S.L. 2009-342, § 5, eff. July 24, 2009; S.L. 2009-389, § 2, eff. July 31, 2009; S.L. 2010-5, § 1, eff. Dec. 1, 2010; S.L. 2015-91, § 3, eff. Dec. 1, 2015.