Contempt of Court

Document Sample
Contempt of Court Powered By Docstoc
					Contempt of Court
2 Types of Contempt of Court

•   Criminal Contempt
    – Used to punish disobedience and preserve
       authority and dignity of the court
    – Grounds for criminal contempt are exclusively
       those specified in NCGS 5A-11 (a) (1)-(a) (10)
    – Direct criminal contempt
    – Indirect criminal contempt
   Civil contempt
    –   Used to encourage compliance with court’s orders
    –   Failure to comply with an order of a court is a
        continuing civil contempt as long as:
          The order remains in force;
          The purpose of the order may still be served by
           compliance with the order;
          The noncompliance by the person to whom the
           order is directed is willful; and
          A person to whom the order is directed is able to
           comply with the order or is able to take reasonable
           measures that would enable the person to comply
           with the order
Direct Criminal Contempt

   Criminal contempt is direct criminal contempt
    when the act is committed within the sight or
    hearing of a presiding judicial official; and
   Is committed in or in immediate proximity to
    the room where proceedings are being held
    before the court; and
   Is likely to interrupt or interfere with matters
    then before the court.
Indirect Criminal Contempt

   Any criminal contempt other than direct
    criminal contempt; and
   Punishable only after proceedings required
    by GS 5A-15.
Summary Proceedings for Direct
Criminal Contempt

   NCGS 5A-14 Summary Proceedings
    –   Summary imposition of measures in response to
        direct criminal contempt
    –   When necessary to restore order or maintain
        dignity and authority of the court and
    –   Measures are imposed substantially
        contemporaneously with the contempt
   Before imposing measures under this
    section, the judicial official must give the
    person charged with contempt :
    –   Summary notice of the charges; and
    –   Summary opportunity to respond
    –   Must find facts supporting the summary
        imposition of measures in response to contempt
Plenary Proceedings for Direct and
Indirect Criminal Contempt

   NCGS 5A-15
   Used when a judicial official chooses not to
    proceed summarily with a person charged
    with direct criminal contempt or when he may
    not proceed summarily
   The judicial official may proceed by an order
    directing the person to appear before a judge
    at a reasonable time and show cause why he
    should not be held in contempt
   A copy must be given to the person charged
Standard of Proof in Criminal
Contempt

   NCGS 5A-14 (b) and NCGS 5A-15 (f)
    mandate that facts in criminal contempt
    cases must be found



    Beyond a reasonable doubt
Who Prosecutes Contempt?

   NCGS 5A-15 (g): In criminal contempt a
    judge may appoint
    –   A prosecutor; or, if apparent conflict of interest,
    –   A member of the Bar to represent the court
   NCGS 5A-23 (f): In civil contempt a person
    with an interest in enforcing the order may
    present the case for a finding of civil
    contempt
Punishment for Criminal Contempt

   Censure
   Imprisonment up to 30 days
   Fine not to exceed $500
   Or any combination thereof



                             EXCEPT…
EXCEPT…

   Violation of GS 5A-11 (8):
    –   Censure
    –   Imprisonment not to exceed 6 months
    –   Fine not to exceed $500
    –   Or any combination of the 3



                                          AND…
AND…

   A person who has NOT been arrested, who
    fails to comply with a nontestimonial
    identification order is subject to
    –   Censure
    –   Imprisonment not to exceed 90 days
    –   Fine not to exceed $500
    –   Or any combination of the 3

                                   EXCEPT…
EXCEPT…

   Except for contempt under GS 5A-11 (5) (9)
    fine or imprisonment may NOT be imposed
    for criminal contempt, direct or indirect
    unless:
    –   The act or omission was willful contemptuous; or
    –   The act or omission was proceeded by a clear
        warning by the court that the conduct is imrpoper
Consequences of Civil Contempt

   A person found in civil contempt my be
    imprisoned as long as the civil contempt
    continues,




                               EXCEPT…
EXCEPT…

   NCGS 5A-21 (b)(1)-(b)(2): A person found in civil
    contempt but not arrested for failure to comply with a
    nontestimonial identification order may not be
    imprisoned more than 90 days unless the person is
    arrested on probable cause and the period of
    imprisonment for a person found in civil contempt
    may not exceed 90 days for the same act of
    disobedience or refusal to comply with an order of
    the court, but may be recommitted for successive
    periods up to 90 days not to exceed 12 months after
    a hearing de novo.

                              ALTHOUGH…
ALTHOUGH…

   Notwithstanding NCGS 5A-21 (b)(2): a
    person found in civil contempt for failure to
    comply with a court order to perform an act
    that does not require the payment of a
    monetary judgment, the person may be
    imprisoned as long as the civil contempt
    continues without further hearing
Same Conduct

   A person may not be held in criminal and civil
    contempt for the same conduct.

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Shared By:
Categories:
Tags:
Stats:
views:31
posted:8/12/2012
language:English
pages:18