North Carolina Criminal Law Chapter 14-226.2 - Harassment of a Participant in a Neighborhood Crime Watch Program (Misdemeanor)
Under North Carolina Criminal Law Chapter 14-226.2, harassment of a participant in a neighborhood crime watch program is defined as the intentional act of threatening or intimidating an individual who is a member of a Neighborhood Watch Program or an individual who resides with a member of a Neighborhood Watch Program.
To prove a charge of harassment, the State must be able to make a showing (present sufficient evidence) of the following “essential elements” of the misdemeanor criminal charge:
- The Defendant willfully threatened and/or intimidated another person
- The person threatened (the alleged victim) and/or intimidated was an identifiable member of a neighborhood crime watch program or a resident in the same household as a member of the neighborhood crime watch program
- The Defendant threatened and/or intimidated the person for the purpose of intimidating and/or retaliating against that person for the person’s participation in a neighborhood crime watch program
- The time the person was threatened and/or intimidated, the person was:
- a. Traveling to or from a neighborhood crime watch meeting OR
- b. Actively participating in a neighborhood crime watch program activity OR
- c. Actively participating in an ongoing criminal investigation.
“Neighborhood Watch Program” is defined as a program consisting of residents in a common geographic area who work closely with law enforcement to reduce crime/the commission of crime, improve the quality of life in the particular geographic area and solve problems.
“Willfully” means the wrongful doing of an act without legal excuse or justification, or the commission of an act purposefully and deliberately in violation of law.2. Examples
Defendant has been in a panic because there is no hand sanitizer left at any pharmacy or grocery store in his city due to the outbreak of coronavirus in Charlotte NC. Defendant has been diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder and has already used the multiple bottles of hand sanitizer he bought two weeks ago. Defendant knows that the Neighborhood Watch Program has stored hand sanitizer for the elderly residents in his neighborhood. Defendant is only thirty-two and is not allowed any community sanitizer. Defendant threatens to assault his neighbor, a member of the neighborhood watch program, if he does not give him some of the sanitizer. Defendant can be charged with a criminal offense under North Carolina Criminal Law Statute 14-226.2.
Defendant has become irritated with an elderly neighborhood watch citizen who lives in the more rural part of Mecklenburg County. This individual keeps screaming at all cars that drive through the neighborhood to, “Slow down you Sunday driver or I’m reporting you to NC DMV!” Defendant slashes the individual’s tires one night and writes a note telling the elderly neighbor to stop his criminal watch activities. The elderly neighbor’s grandson is home and watches Defendant engaged in this activity. The grandson calls the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD). Defendant can be charged with a criminal offense under North Carolina Criminal Law Statute 14-226.2.3. Related Offenses
For other crimes related to Harassment or Threats, please see:
- Who is the Best Criminal Defense Lawyer in Charlotte?
- Top 3 Things to do if Arrested
- Lawyers who handle Communicating Threats charges in Charlotte
- Interfering with Emergency Communication
- North Carolina Criminal Law Chapter 14-277.1: Communicating Threats
The Defendant may have a viable defense under North Carolina law if he or she can prove that they did not threaten or intimidate the individual OR that the individual was not a member of a neighborhood watch program. In the latter instance, the State may possibly seek another related criminal charge of Communicating Threats.5. Penalties for Harassment of a Participant in a Neighborhood Crime Watch Program
The crime of Harassment of a Participant in a Neighborhood Crime Watch Program is a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable by a maximum period of incarceration of 120 days in a local or county jail.
You may also be subject to a fine of $300.6. Criminal Defense for Harassment of a Participant in a Neighborhood Crime Watch Program
If you have been charged with Harassment of a Participant in a Neighborhood Crime Watch Program, please contact our team of Charlotte criminal defense lawyers immediately. This offense is not something that should be taken lightly.
A Class 1 misdemeanor conviction can have long-term consequences, including a criminal record, if you plead guilty or are convicted after a trial. Many employers, real estate agents and financial institutions perform background checks. A conviction can seriously impede your ability to obtain a loan, rent an apartment or secure employment.