See G.S. 14-50.16(a), reproduced above.


A person guilty of this offense(1) is employed by or associated with (2) a criminal street gang and(3) (a) conducts or participates in a pattern of criminal street gang activity or(b) acquires or maintains any interest in or control of any real or personal property through a pattern of criminal street gang activity.


Class H felony. G.S. 14-50.16(a).


Element (2). The terms “criminal street gang” and “street gang” mean any ongoing organization, association, or group of three or more persons, formal or informal, that:

has as one of its primary activities the commission of one or more felony offenses or delinquent acts that would be felonies if committed by an adult; has three or more members individually or collectively engaged in, or who have engaged in, criminal street gang activity; and may have a common name, common identifying sign, or symbol.

G.S. 14-50.16(b). The term “criminal street gang activity” is defined in the next note.

Element (3). To engage in “criminal street gang activity” means to commit, to attempt to commit, or to solicit, coerce, or intimidate another to commit an act or acts with the specific intent that such act or acts were intended or committed for the purpose of, or in furtherance of, the person’s involvement in a criminal street gang or street gang. G.S. 14-50.16(c). An act or acts are covered by the offense if they are accompanied by the necessary mens rea or criminal intent and would be chargeable by indictment under Article 5 of G.S. Chapter 90 or an offense under G.S. Chapter 14, with certain exceptions. Id. The Chapter 14 exceptions include:

offenses in Article 9 (Hazing); offenses in Article 22A (Trespassing upon “Posted” Property to Hunt, Fish, Trap, or Remove Pine Needles/Straw); offenses in Article 40 (Protection of the Family); offenses in Article 46 (Regulation of Landlord and Tenant); offenses in Article 47 (Cruelty to Animals); offenses in Article 59 (Public Intoxication); G.S. 14-82 (Taking horses, mules or dogs for temporary purposes); G.S. 14-145 (Unlawful posting of advertisements); G.S. 14-183 (Bigamy); G.S. 14-184 (Fornication and adultery); G.S. 14-186 (Opposite sexes occupying same bedroom at hotel for immoral purposes; falsely registering as husband and wife); G.S. 14-190.9 (Indecent exposure); G.S. 14-197 (Using profane or indecent language on public highways; counties exempt); G.S. 14-247 (Private use of publicly owned vehicle); G.S. 14-248 (Obtaining repairs and supplies for private vehicle at expense of State); and G.S. 14-313 (Youth access to tobacco products).

Id. The statute also excepts G.S. 14-78.1, G.S. 14-86, G.S. 14-179, G.S. 14-195, and G.S. 14-201, but these are repealed statutes.

The term “pattern of criminal street gang activity” means engaging in, and having a conviction for, at least two prior incidents of criminal street gang activity that have the same or similar purposes, results, accomplices, victims, or methods of commission or otherwise are interrelated by common characteristics and are not isolated and unrelated incidents, provided that at least one of these offenses occurred after December 1, 2008, and the last of the offenses occurred within three years, excluding any periods of imprisonment, of prior criminal street gang activity. G.S. 14-50.16(d). Any offenses committed by a defendant prior to indictment for an offense based upon a pattern of street gang activity may not be used as the basis for any subsequent indictments for offenses involving a pattern of street gang activity. Id.

Exceptions. This crime does not apply to a person under the age of 16. G.S. 14-50.28.

Multiple convictions and punishments. G.S. 14-50.21 provides that all of the gang-related offenses proscribed by G.S. 14-50.16 through 14-50.20 are separate offenses.

Forfeiture. G.S. 15-50.23 provides for seizure and forfeiture of property used or intended for use in, derived from, or realized through criminal street gang activity or a pattern of criminal street gang activity.

Real property declared a public nuisance. G.S. 14-50.24 provides that real property erected, established, maintained, owned, leased, or used by any criminal street gang to conduct criminal street gang activity shall constitute a public nuisance and may be abated as provided in the General Statutes.

Related Offenses Not in This Chapter

“Continuing Criminal Enterprise—Non-Drug Offenses” (Chapter 5)“Continuing Criminal Enterprise—Drug Offenses” (Chapter 27)


Because 2017 legislation, S.L. 2017-194, sec. 1, repealed G.S. 14-50.16, delete this crime.