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MyraB, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 371
Experience:  I have over 20 years experience in criminal law and civil litigation from pre-trial practice to appeal.
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How would one go about suing a police department in a state

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How would one go about suing a police department in a state other than the one in which the plaintiff lives ? This rural PD has been holding funds recovered from a scam, but refuses to even communicate with me and another victim and I cannot find a local firm that will even write them a letter.
Hello and thank you for your question.

In order to provide you with the most relevant and useful answer to your question, I need some additional information. Please let me know in which state the police department that is holding the recovered funds is located.

I look forward to working with you to provide the information you seek.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

North Carolina

Thank you for your response.

There are two statutes that may apply to your circumstances.
Under NC § 14-2.3. Forfeiture of gain acquired through criminal activity.

(a) . . . any money or other property or interest in property acquired thereby shall be forfeited to the State of North Carolina, including any profits, gain, remuneration, or compensation directly or indirectly collected by or accruing to any offender.

(b) An action to recover such property shall be brought by either a District Attorney or the Attorney General pursuant to G.S. 1-532. The action must be brought within three years from the date of the conviction for the offense.

(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to require forfeiture of any money or property recovered by law-enforcement officers pursuant to the investigation of an offense when the money or property is readily identifiable by the owner or guardian of the property or is traceable to him.

The statute can be found here

In addition, under North Carolina § 90-112, "any property seized by a state, local, or county law enforcement officer shall be held in safekeeping . . . until an order of disposition is properly entered by the judge." The statute may be found here

Therefore, you may want to send a letter to the police citing the statutes and making a claim to the property as the true owner, or victim of the scam. If you get no response and there is a pending related criminal action, you may want to contact the victim advocate associated with the prosecutor's office to assist you in recovering your property from the police. If there is no victim advocate, you may want to file a Motion to Intervene and for Return of Property in the case where the related criminal action is pending. You would not need to file a separate complaint, but merely a motion to intervene and request that the court order disposition of the property to you. If there is currently no case pending, then you can file a complaint for injunctive relief in superior or district court in NC where the police and/or property is located. This would be a basic complaint alleging ownership of the property, possession by the police and a request that the court order that the police return the property to you.

Please feel free to ask any follow-up questions.
MyraB and 10 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks for your prompt and thorough response !

You're welcome. Please take a moment to rate my answer positively as it is the only way I can receive credit for assisting you.

Also, should you need any further information, please let me know.

Thank you.