Nuisance Abatement
Alcohol Law Enforcement partners with local sheriff's and police departments to spearhead enforcement operations aimed at making a community safer.

Blights on the community such as a drug house, open air drug sales in a neighborhood and illegal alcoholic beverage sales locations, which tend to be the hub of illegal activities, are a detriment to neighborhoods and reduce the quality of life of citizens.

Chapter 19 of the North Carolina General Statutes provides for a civil action to effectually close a property declared to be a nuisance. Brought on behalf of the State of North Carolina, the civil action targets property used for specified illegal purposes.  As defined in statute, nuisance activities include prostitution, gambling, illegal possession or sale of drugs or alcoholic beverages, and repeated acts which create a breach of the peace. The civil penalties for operating a nuisance include fines, forfeitures, perpetual restrictive covenants on property, and subsequent jail time for failing to comply with judgments.

Alcohol Law Enforcement agents receive specialized training in the use of the state’s public nuisance law and civil procedure. Special agents work with local governments and citizens to rid neighborhoods of drug houses, liquor houses, clubs and other nuisance properties that spawn serious and violent criminal acts.

Nuisance Abatement investigations commence by a written request from the local district attorney, chief of police or sheriff. Upon such request, ALE investigates nuisance properties to determine if the location meets the criteria for a nuisance action. If such action is recommended, ALE special agents coordinate interviews, prepare affidavits, conduct property title searches, and thoroughly research law enforcement records from local departments.

The attorney of record is presented with a court-ready case against the property owner. Property owners can face civil judgments including, but not limited to, fines and forfeiture of property. Furthermore, the property owner is prohibited from operating a nuisance anywhere in North Carolina, and the property itself can never be operated as a nuisance, regardless of ownership.