CHAPTER 959
COURT JURISDICTION AND POWER

Table of Contents

Sec. 54-1k. Issuance of protective orders in stalking and harassment cases.
Sec. 54-2e. Issuance of rearrest warrant or capias for failure to appear.
Sec. 54-36a. Definitions. Inventory. Return of stolen property. Disposition of other seized property. Return of compliance.

PART I
ARREST AND ARRAIGNMENT

      Sec. 54-1k. Issuance of protective orders in stalking and harassment cases. Upon the arrest of a person for a violation of section 53a-181c, 53a-181d or 53a-181e, the court may issue a protective order pursuant to this section. Upon the arrest of a person for a violation of section 53a-182b or 53a-183, the court may issue a protective order pursuant to this section if it finds that such violation caused the victim to reasonably fear for his or her physical safety. Such order shall be an order of the court, and the clerk of the court shall cause a certified copy of such order to be sent to the victim, and a copy of such order, or the information contained in such order, to be sent by facsimile or other means within forty-eight hours of its issuance to the appropriate law enforcement agency. A protective order issued under this section may include provisions necessary to protect the victim from threats, harassment, injury or intimidation by the defendant, including but not limited to, an order enjoining the defendant from (1) imposing any restraint upon the person or liberty of the victim, (2) threatening, harassing, assaulting, molesting or sexually assaulting the victim, or (3) entering the dwelling of the victim. A protective order issued under this section may include provisions necessary to protect any animal owned or kept by the victim including, but not limited to, an order enjoining the defendant from injuring or threatening to injure such animal. Such order shall be made a condition of the bail or release of the defendant and shall contain the following language: "In accordance with section 53a-223 of the Connecticut general statutes, any violation of this order constitutes criminal violation of a protective order which is punishable by a term of imprisonment of not more than five years, a fine of not more than five thousand dollars, or both. Additionally, in accordance with section 53a-107 of the Connecticut general statutes, entering or remaining in a building or any other premises in violation of this order constitutes criminal trespass in the first degree which is punishable by a term of imprisonment of not more than one year, a fine of not more than two thousand dollars, or both. Violation of this order also violates a condition of your bail or release and may result in raising the amount of bail or revoking release." The information contained in and concerning the issuance of any protective order issued under this section shall be entered in the registry of protective orders pursuant to section 51-5c.

      (P.A. 95-214, S. 3; P.A. 02-132, S. 56; P.A. 05-147, S. 1; 05-288, S. 183; P.A. 07-78, S. 3.)

      History: P.A. 02-132 replaced provisions re sending certified copy of order to law enforcement agency with provisions re sending copy of or information contained in order to law enforcement agency by facsimile or other means, replaced provisions re entry of protective orders in registry established under Sec. 46b-38c(e) with provisions re entry of information into registry of protective orders pursuant to Sec. 51-5c and made technical changes, effective January 1, 2003; P.A. 05-147 authorized the issuance of a protective order upon the arrest of a person for a violation of Sec. 53a-182b or 53a-183 if the violation caused the victim to reasonably fear for his or her physical safety and revised the language of the order to make technical changes and specify that a violation of Sec. 53a-223 is punishable by a term of imprisonment of not more than five years, a fine of not more than $5,000, or both, reflecting the increase in the penalty for said violation made by P.A. 02-127; P.A. 05-288 made technical changes and revised required language in order re penalty for criminal violation of a protective order, effective July 13, 2005; P.A. 07-78 added provision re authority of protective order to include provisions necessary to protect any animal owned or kept by the victim.

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      Sec. 54-2e. Issuance of rearrest warrant or capias for failure to appear. Unless good cause is shown, no court shall issue a rearrest warrant or a capias for failure to appear as provided in section 53a-173 prior to four o'clock p.m. of the day of the alleged failure to appear.

      (P.A. 07-243, S. 3.)

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PART III
SEIZED PROPERTY

      Sec. 54-36a. Definitions. Inventory. Return of stolen property. Disposition of other seized property. Return of compliance. (a) As used in this section, sections 53-278c and 54-36c: (1) "Contraband" means any property, the possession of which is prohibited by any provision of the general statutes; (2) "stolen property" shall include, but not be limited to, cash or the proceeds from the sale of such property obtained by theft or other illegal means; (3) "owner" means a person or persons entitled to seized property as a matter of law or fact.

      (b) (1) Whenever property is seized in connection with a criminal arrest or seized pursuant to a search warrant without an arrest, the law enforcement agency seizing such property shall file, on forms provided for this purpose by the Office of the Chief Court Administrator, an inventory of the property seized. The inventory, together with the uniform arrest report, in the case of an arrest, shall be filed with the clerk of the court for the geographical area in which the criminal offense is alleged to have been committed; except, when the property is stolen property and, in the opinion of the law enforcement officer, does not exceed two hundred fifty dollars in value, or when an attempt was made to steal the property but the property at all times remained on the premises in a sealed container, the filing of an inventory shall not be required and such property may be returned to the owner. In the case of property seized in connection with a search warrant without an arrest, the inventory shall be attached to the warrant and shall be filed with the clerk of the court for the geographical area in which the search warrant was issued. If any criminal proceeding is transferred to another court location, then the clerk with whom the inventory is filed shall transfer such inventory to the clerk of the court location to which such action is transferred.

      (2) If the seized property is stolen property, within ten days of the seizure, the law enforcement agency seizing the property shall notify the owner of the property if known, or, if the owner of the property is unknown at the time of seizure, such agency shall within ten days of any subsequent ascertainment of the owner notify such owner, and, on a form prescribed by the Office of the Chief Court Administrator, advise the owner of such owner's rights concerning the property and the location of the property. Such written notice shall include a request form for the return of the property. The owner may request the return of the property by filing such request form with such law enforcement agency, and upon receipt of such request, the law enforcement agency shall forward it to the clerk of the court for the geographical area in which the criminal offense is alleged to have been committed. The clerk of the court shall notify the defendant or defendants of the request to return the property. The court shall order the return of the property within thirty days of the date of filing such return request by the owner, except that for good cause shown, the court may order retention of the property for a period to be determined by the court. Any secondary evidence of the identity, description or value of such property shall be admissible in evidence against such defendant in the trial of such case. The fact that the evidence is secondary in nature may be shown to affect the weight of such evidence, but not to affect its admissibility. If the stolen property is a motor vehicle, a photograph of the motor vehicle and a sworn affidavit attesting to the vehicle identification number of such motor vehicle shall be sufficient evidence of the identity of the motor vehicle. For the purposes of this subdivision, "motor vehicle" means a passenger or commercial motor vehicle or a motorcycle, as defined in section 14-1, and includes construction equipment, agricultural tractors and farm implements.

      (3) (A) If the seized property is currency and is stolen property, the law enforcement agency seizing the currency shall follow the procedures set forth in subdivision (2) of this subsection.

      (B) If the seized property is currency and is not stolen property, the law enforcement agency seizing the currency shall, within ten days of such seizure, notify the defendant or defendants, if such currency was seized in connection with a criminal arrest, or the person or persons having a possessory interest in the premises from which such currency was seized, if such currency was seized pursuant to a search warrant without an arrest, that such defendant or person has the right to a hearing before the Superior Court on the disposition of the currency. Such defendant or person may, not later than thirty days after receiving such notice, request a hearing before the Superior Court. The court may, after any such hearing, order that the law enforcement agency, after taking reasonable measures to preserve the evidentiary value of the currency, deposit the currency in a deposit account in the name of the law enforcement agency as custodian for evidentiary funds at a financial institution in this state or order, for good cause shown, that the currency be retained for a period to be determined by the court. If such defendant or person does not request a hearing, the law enforcement agency may, after taking reasonable measures to preserve the evidentiary value of the currency, deposit the currency in a deposit account in the name of the law enforcement agency as custodian for evidentiary funds at a financial institution in this state.

      (C) If the currency is deposited in a deposit account at a financial institution in this state pursuant to subparagraph (B) of this subdivision, the financial institution at which such deposit account is established shall not be required to segregate the currency deposited in such deposit account. No funds may be withdrawn from such deposit account except pursuant to a court order directed to the financial institution. Any withdrawal of funds from such deposit account shall be in the form of a check issued by the financial institution to the law enforcement agency or to such other payee as the court may order. Nothing in this subdivision shall prohibit a financial institution from charging a fee for the maintenance and administration of such deposit account and for the review of the court order.

      (D) If the currency is deposited in a deposit account at a financial institution in this state pursuant to subparagraph (B) of this subdivision, any secondary evidence of the identity, description or value of such currency shall be admissible in evidence against a defendant in the trial of a criminal offense. The fact that the evidence is secondary in nature may be shown to affect the weight of such evidence, but not to affect its admissibility.

      (c) Unless such seized property is stolen property and is ordered returned pursuant to subsection (b) of this section or unless such seized property is adjudicated a nuisance in accordance with section 54-33g, or unless the court finds that such property shall be forfeited or is contraband, or finds that such property is a controlled drug, a controlled substance or drug paraphernalia as defined in subdivision (8), (9) or (20) of section 21a-240, it shall, at the final disposition of the criminal action or as soon thereafter as is practical, or, if there is no criminal action, at any time upon motion of the prosecuting official of such court, order the return of such property to its owner within six months upon proper claim therefor.

      (d) When the court orders the return of the seized property to the owner, the order shall provide that if the seized property is not claimed by the owner within six months, the property shall be destroyed or be given to a charitable or educational institution or to a governmental agency or institution, except that (1) if such property is money it shall be remitted to the state and shall be deposited in the General Fund or (2) if such property is a valuable prize it shall be disposed of by public auction or private sale in which case the proceeds shall become the property of the state and shall be deposited in the General Fund; provided any person who has a bona fide mortgage, assignment of lease or rent, lien or security interest in such property shall have the same right to the proceeds as he had in the property prior to the sale.

      (e) If such seized property is adjudicated a nuisance or if the court finds that such property shall be forfeited or is contraband other than a controlled drug, a controlled substance or drug paraphernalia as defined in subdivision (8), (9) or (20) of section 21a-240, the court shall order that such property be destroyed or be given to a charitable or educational institution or to a governmental agency or institution, except that (1) if such property is money, the court shall order that it be remitted to the state and be deposited in the General Fund or (2) if such property is a valuable prize, the court shall order that it be disposed of by public auction or private sale in which case the proceeds shall become the property of the state and shall be deposited in the General Fund; provided any person who has a bona fide mortgage, assignment of lease or rent, lien or security interest in such property shall have the same right to the proceeds as he had in the property prior to sale.

      (f) If the court finds that such seized property is fireworks as defined in section 29-356, the court shall order the forfeiture and destruction of such property. Any secondary evidence of the identity, description or value of such property shall be admissible in evidence against the defendant in the trial of the case. A photograph of the fireworks and a sworn affidavit describing such fireworks shall be sufficient evidence of the identity of the fireworks. The fact that the evidence is secondary in nature may be shown to affect the weight of such evidence, but not to affect its admissibility.

      (g) If the court finds that such seized property is a controlled drug, a controlled substance or drug paraphernalia as defined in subdivision (8), (9) or (20) of section 21a-240, the court shall order the forfeiture and destruction of such property or order it delivered to the Commissioner of Consumer Protection pursuant to section 54-36g.

      (h) Any order made under the provisions of subsections (b), (c), (d), (e), (f) and (g) of this section or section 54-33f or 54-33g, shall upon notification from the clerk, be complied with by the person or department having custody or possession of such property.

      (i) A return of compliance with the court order, on a form prescribed by the Office of the Chief Court Administrator, shall be filed with the clerk of the court by the person or department to whom notice is sent in accordance with the provisions of subsection (h) of this section. If the court ordered the seized property returned to the owner within six months upon proper claim therefor, the return of the compliance shall be filed within seventy-two hours of the return of the property to the owner. If the owner does not claim the property within six months, then the return of compliance shall be filed within seventy-two hours of compliance with the order of the court pursuant to subsection (d) of this section. Failure to comply with the court order within ninety days following expiration of the period within which the owner of the property may claim the property shall constitute criminal contempt. If the court renders an order concerning the disposition of the property other than an order to return the property to the owner, the return of compliance shall be filed with the clerk within seventy-two hours of compliance with the court order. Failure to comply with the court order within ninety days of receipt of such order shall constitute criminal contempt. Failure to file a return of compliance as set forth in this subsection shall constitute criminal contempt. Anyone convicted of criminal contempt may be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars. Each failure to comply with a court order and each failure to file a return of compliance within the required period shall constitute a separate criminal contempt.

      (P.A. 74-221, S. 1-6; P.A. 75-530, S. 16, 17, 35; P.A. 76-77, S. 1; P.A. 78-280, S. 1, 127; P.A. 79-392; P.A. 81-240, S. 1, 3; P.A. 82-235; P.A. 85-263, S. 1; P.A. 87-243; 87-294, S. 2; P.A. 99-247, S. 5; P.A. 01-104; 01-186, S. 8; June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, S. 146(c); P.A. 04-189, S. 1; P.A. 07-246, S. 5.)

      History: P.A. 75-530 amended Subsec. (b) to make clear distinctions between filing procedure for inventories of property seized in arrest or under a search warrant, and to add provisions specifically applicable to stolen property and restated Subsec. (c); P.A. 76-77 required that uniform arrest report or search warrant, as the case may be, be filed with inventory, added exception to inventory requirement in connection with arrest re stolen property not exceeding $50 in value and added provision re return of stolen property upon its owner's application to court in Subsec. (b) and changed applicable time periods re claims for property and return of property in Subsecs. (c) to (f) from one year to six months; P.A. 78-280 deleted references to filing of inventories in counties; P.A. 79-392 added definitions of "stolen property" and "owner" in Subsec. (a) and substituted reference to Sec. 54-36c for reference to Sec. 54-36b; P.A. 81-240 replaced previous provisions re return of stolen property with new provisions re notification of the owner of stolen property, procedure for return of stolen property within 30 days of request therefor, except for good cause shown and specified that secondary nature of evidence may affect weight of evidence but not admissibility in Subsec. (b) and deleted provision in Subsec. (e) whereby return of compliance was filed after return of property to owner or at the end of six months in cases where court orders return within that time period; P.A. 82-235 required office of chief court administrator to provide forms for return of stolen property, required notice of stolen property within 10 days instead of 48 hours, provided procedure for return of seized property, other than stolen property or contraband, within six months, eliminated sentence of imprisonment for criminal contempt for failure to file the return of compliance and required that any sale of unclaimed seized property ordered by the court shall be public; P.A. 85-263 amended Subsec. (a) by adding exceptions of stolen property which does not exceed $250 in value or when an attempt was made to steal property but property remained on premises in sealed container, amended Subsec. (c) by adding "finds that such property is a controlled drug" and "drug paraphernalia", and added provisions re order of return of property by court, property adjudicated a nuisance, disposition of controlled drugs, controlled substances and drug paraphernalia and immediate filing of return of compliance if owner fails to claim property within six months; P.A. 87-243 added new Subsec. (f) re the forfeiture and destruction of fireworks and the admissibility of secondary evidence of such fireworks, and relettered the remaining subsections and internal references accordingly; P.A. 87-294 specified that property which is money and sale or auction proceeds be deposited in the general fund; P.A. 99-247 amended Subsec. (b) to insert Subdiv. indicators, reposition provision re transfer of inventory and add new Subdiv. (3) re the deposit of seized currency in a safe deposit box in a financial institution, the removal of such currency and the responsibility of such financial institution with respect to such safe deposit box and its contents; P.A. 01-104 amended Subsec. (b) by making a technical change for purposes of gender neutrality and adding provisions re motor vehicles in Subdiv. (2), deleting former Subdiv. (3) and adding new Subdiv. (3) re currency; P.A. 01-186 amended Subsec. (i) by requiring return of compliance to be filed within 72 hours of return of property or court order, providing that failure to comply with court order within 90 days shall constitute criminal contempt, adding provision re each failure to file return of compliance within required period shall constitute a separate criminal contempt and making conforming changes; June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6 replaced Commissioner of Consumer Protection with Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective July 1, 2004; P.A. 04-189 repealed Sec. 146 of June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, thereby reversing the merger of the Departments of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective June 1, 2004; P.A. 07-246 amended Subsec. (f) to provide that a photograph and affidavit shall be sufficient evidence of the identity of fireworks.

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