Gang-Related Legislation by State Index

Mississippi

Carjacking (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 47-7-3. Parole Eligibility; Earned Time; Tentative Hearing Date; Program Priority

(1)(d)(ii) No person shall be eligible for parole who shall, on or after October 1, 1994, be convicted of robbery, attempted robbery or carjacking as provided in Section 97-3-115 et seq., through the display of a firearm or drive-by shooting as provided in Section 97-3-109. The provisions of this paragraph (d) (ii) shall also apply to any person who shall commit robbery, attempted robbery, carjacking or a drive-by shooting on or after October 1, 1994, through the display of a deadly weapon.

Mississippi § 97-3-113. Mississippi Carjacking Act of 1993

Sections 97-3-113, 97-3-115 and 97-3-117 shall be known and may be cited as the "Mississippi Carjacking Act of 1993."

Mississippi § 97-3-115. Carjacking Act Definitions

The following words and phrases shall have the meanings ascribed herein unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

"Carjacking" means taking of a motor vehicle from another person’s immediate actual possession knowingly or recklessly by force or violence, whether against resistance or by sudden or stealthy seizure or snatching, or by putting in fear, or attempting to do so, or by any other means.

"Motor vehicle" includes every device in, upon or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, which is self-propelled.

Mississippi § 97-3-117. Carjacking, Violations and Punishment

(1) Whoever shall knowingly or recklessly by force or violence, whether against resistance or by sudden or stealthy seizure or snatching, or by putting in fear, or attempting to do so, or by any other means shall take a motor vehicle from another person’s immediate actual possession shall be guilty of carjacking.

(a) A person who is convicted of carjacking shall be fined not more than Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00) and be committed to the custody of the State Department of Corrections for not more than fifteen (15) years.

(b) A person who is convicted of attempted carjacking shall receive the same punishment as the person who is convicted of carjacking.

(2) Whoever commits the offense of carjacking while armed with or having readily available any pistol or other firearm or imitation thereof or other dangerous or deadly weapon, including a sawed-off shotgun, shotgun, machine gun, rifle, dirk, bowie knife, butcher knife, switchblade, razor, blackjack, billy, or metallic or other false knuckles, or any object capable of inflicting death or serious bodily harm, shall be guilty of armed carjacking.

(a) Any person who is convicted of armed carjacking shall be fined not more than Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00) and be committed to the custody of the State Department of Corrections for not more than thirty (30) years.

(b) Any person who is convicted of attempted armed carjacking shall receive the same punishment as the person who is convicted of armed carjacking.

(3) Any person convicted of a second or subsequent offense under this section shall be fined an amount up to twice that otherwise authorized and shall be imprisoned for a term up to twice the term otherwise authorized.

Mississippi § 99-19-71. Expungement of Conviction; Eligible Offenses; Notice; Procedure; Order; Effect; Expungement of Arrest Record

(2)(a) Any person who has been convicted of one (1) of the following felonies may petition the court in which the conviction was had for an order to expunge one (1) conviction from all public records five (5) years after the successful completion of all terms and conditions of the sentence for the conviction: a bad check offense under Section 97-19-55; possession of a controlled substance or paraphernalia under Section 41-29-139(c) or (d); false pretense under Section 97-19-39; larceny under Section 97-17-41; malicious mischief under Section 97-17-67; or shoplifting under Section 97-23-93. A person is eligible for only one (1) felony expunction under this paragraph.

(b) Any person who was under the age of eighteen (18) years when he committed a felony may petition the court in which the conviction was had for an order to expunge one (1) conviction from all public records five (5) years after the successful completion of all terms and conditions of the sentence for the conviction; however, eligibility for expunction shall not apply to the following felonies: rape under Sections 97-3-65 and 97-3-71; sexual battery under Section 97-3-95; murder under Section 97-3-21; manslaughter under Section 97-3-25; carjacking under Sections 97-3-113 through 97-3-117; burglary of a commercial establishment or occupied dwelling; cyberstalking under Section 97-45-15; exploitation of children by the use of computers or other means under Sections 97-5-31 through 97-5-37; armed robbery under Section 97-3-79; and any felony that, in the determination of the circuit court, is a violent crime or a felony that is related to the distribution of a controlled substance and in the court's discretion it should not be expunged. A person is eligible for only one (1) felony expunction under this paragraph.

Drive-By Shooting (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 47-7-3. Parole Eligibility; Earned Time; Tentative Hearing Date; Program Priority

(1)(d)(ii) No person shall be eligible for parole who shall, on or after October 1, 1994, be convicted of robbery, attempted robbery or carjacking as provided in Section 97-3-115 et seq., through the display of a firearm or drive-by shooting as provided in Section 97-3-109. The provisions of this paragraph (d) (ii) shall also apply to any person who shall commit robbery, attempted robbery, carjacking or a drive-by shooting on or after October 1, 1994, through the display of a deadly weapon.

Mississippi § 97-3-109. Drive-By Shootings and Bombings; Penalties; Arrest Power

(1) A person is guilty of a drive-by shooting if he attempts, other than for lawful self-defense, to cause serious bodily injury to another, or causes such injury purposely, knowingly or recklessly under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life by discharging a firearm while in or on a vehicle.

(2) A person is guilty of a drive-by bombing if he attempts to cause serious bodily injury to another or attempts to cause damage to the property of another, or causes such injury or damage purposely, knowingly or recklessly under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life by throwing or ejecting any bomb or explosive device from a vehicle while in or on the vehicle.

(3) A person convicted of violating subsection (1) or (2) of this section shall be punished by commitment to the custody of the State Department of Corrections for a term not to exceed thirty (30) years and a fine not to exceed Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00). A drive-by shooting or a drive-by bombing shall be a felony.

(4) This section shall not be construed to restrict the power to apprehend or arrest a person committing an offense if such apprehension or arrest is otherwise lawful.

Mississippi § 97-3-110. Seizure and Forfeiture of Firearms and Motor Vehicles; Unlawful Possession and Drive-By Shootings or Bombings by Minors

(1) Whenever a person under eighteen (18) years of age is unlawfully in possession of a firearm, the firearm shall be seized and, after an adjudication of delinquency or conviction, shall be subject to forfeiture.

(2) Whenever a person under eighteen (18) years of age unlawfully discharges a firearm in or throws or ejects a bomb from a motor vehicle in violation of Section 97-3-109, Mississippi Code of 1972, the motor vehicle shall be subject to seizure and, after an adjudication of delinquency or conviction, be subject to forfeiture pursuant to the procedures set forth in Section 97-3-111, Mississippi Code of 1972.

Mississippi § 97-3-111. Forfeiture of Vehicles Used in Drive-By Shootings or Bombings; Procedure

(1) All vehicles which are used in any manner to facilitate the discharging of a firearm or the throwing or ejection of a bomb or explosive device in violation of Section 97-3-109 shall be subject to forfeiture, however:

(a) No conveyance used by any person as a common carrier in the transaction of business as a common carrier is subject to forfeiture under this section unless it appears that the owner or other person in charge of the conveyance is a consenting party or privy to a violation of Sections 97-3-109 and 97-3-111;

(b) No conveyance is subject to forfeiture under this section by reason of any act or omission proved by the owner thereof to have been committed or omitted without his knowledge or consent; if the confiscating authority has reason to believe that the conveyance is a leased or rented conveyance, then the confiscating authority shall notify the owner of the conveyance within five (5) days of the confiscation;

(c) A forfeiture of a conveyance encumbered by a bona fide security interest is subject to the interest of the secured party of he neither had knowledge or nor consented to the act or omission.

Mississippi § 97-37-29. Firing Into a Dwelling

If any person shall willfully and unlawfully shoot or discharge any pistol, shotgun, rifle or firearm of any nature or description into any dwelling house or any other building usually occupied by persons, whether actually occupied or not, he shall be guilty of a felony whether or not anybody be injured thereby and, on conviction thereof, shall be punished by imprisonment in the state penitentiary for a term not to exceed ten (10) years, or by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than one (1) year, or by fine of not more than five thousand dollars ($ 5,000.00), or by both such imprisonment and fine, within the discretion of the court.

Enhanced Penalties—Sentencing (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 97-44-19. Aiding and Abetting; Crimes in Furtherance of Gang Activities; Penalties

(1) Any person who intentionally directs, participates, conducts, furthers, or assists in the commission of illegal gang activity shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than one (1) year nor more than one-half (1/2) of the maximum term of imprisonment provided for an underlying offense and may be fined an amount not to exceed Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00). Any sentence of imprisonment imposed pursuant to this section shall be in addition and consecutive to any sentence imposed for the underlying offense.

(2) Any person who is convicted of a felony or an attempted felony which is committed for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with any criminal street gang, with the intent to promote, further, or assist in the affairs of a criminal gang, shall, upon conviction of that felony, in addition and consecutive to the punishment prescribed for the felony or attempted felony of which he or she has been convicted, be imprisoned for not less than one (1) year nor more than one-half (1/2) of the maximum term of imprisonment provided for that offense.

(3) Any person who is convicted of an offense other than a felony which is committed for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with, any criminal street gang, with the specific intent to promote, further or assist in any criminal conduct or enterprise by gang members, shall, in addition and consecutive to the penalty provided for that offense, be imprisoned for an additional period of not more than one (1) year.

(4) Any person who knowingly and willfully sells or buys goods or performs services for a criminal street gang in furtherance of illegal activity shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than one (1) year nor more than one-half (1/2) of the maximum term of imprisonment provided for the underlying offense and may be fined an amount not to exceed Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00).

(5) The court may elect to suspend all or a part of any additional mandatory punishment or enhanced punishment provided for in this chapter to impose alternative punishment in the form of properly supervised community service or placement in an appropriate adolescent offender program, if available, only in an unusual case where the interest of justice would best be served, and if the court specifies on the record and enters into the minutes the circumstances and reasons that the interests of justice would best be served by that suspension of enhanced punishment.

Gang Activity and Forfeiture (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 97-3-110. Seizure and Forfeiture of Firearms and Motor Vehicles; Unlawful Possession and Drive-By Shootings or Bombings by Minors

(1) Whenever a person under eighteen (18) years of age is unlawfully in possession of a firearm, the firearm shall be seized and, after an adjudication of delinquency or conviction, shall be subject to forfeiture.

(2) Whenever a person under eighteen (18) years of age unlawfully discharges a firearm in or throws or ejects a bomb from a motor vehicle in violation of Section 97-3-109, Mississippi Code of 1972, the motor vehicle shall be subject to seizure and, after an adjudication of delinquency or conviction, be subject to forfeiture pursuant to the procedures set forth in Section 97-3-111, Mississippi Code of 1972.

Mississippi § 97-3-111. Forfeiture of Vehicles Used in Drive-By Shootings or Bombings; Procedure

(1) All vehicles which are used in any manner to facilitate the discharging of a firearm or the throwing or ejection of a bomb or explosive device in violation of Section 97-3-109 shall be subject to forfeiture, however:

(a) No conveyance used by any person as a common carrier in the transaction of business as a common carrier is subject to forfeiture under this section unless it appears that the owner or other person in charge of the conveyance is a consenting party or privy to a violation of Sections 97-3-109 and 97-3-111;

(b) No conveyance is subject to forfeiture under this section by reason of any act or omission proved by the owner thereof to have been committed or omitted without his knowledge or consent; if the confiscating authority has reason to believe that the conveyance is a leased or rented conveyance, then the confiscating authority shall notify the owner of the conveyance within five (5) days of the confiscation;

(c) A forfeiture of a conveyance encumbered by a bona fide security interest is subject to the interest of the secured party of he neither had knowledge or nor consented to the act or omission.

Mississippi § 97-44-17. Forfeiture of Firearms, Ammunition, and Dangerous Weapons Used by Criminal Street Gangs; Disposition of Property Seized; Procedure.

(1) Any firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon in the possession of a member of a criminal street gang may be seized by any law enforcement agency or peace officer when the law enforcement agency or peace officer has probable cause to believe that the firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon is or has been used by a gang in the commission of illegal activity.

(2) The district attorney or an attorney for the seizing agency shall initiate, in a civil action, forfeiture proceedings by petition in the circuit courts as to any property seized pursuant to the provisions of this section within thirty (30) days of seizure. The district attorney shall provide notice of the filing of the petition to those members of the gang who become known to law enforcement officials as a result of the seizure and any related arrests, and to any person determined by law enforcement officials to be the owner of any of the property involved. After initial notice of the filing of the petition, the court shall assure that all persons so notified continue to receive notice of all subsequent proceedings related to the property.

(3) Any person who claims an interest in any seized property shall, in order to assert a claim that the property should not be forfeited, file a notice with the court, without necessity of paying costs, of the intent to establish either of the following:

(a) That the persons asserting the claim did not know of, could not have known of, or had no reason to believe in its use by a gang in the commission of illegal activity; or

(b) That the law enforcement officer lacked the requisite reasonable belief that the property was or had been used by a gang in the commission of illegal activity.

(4) An acquittal or dismissal in a criminal proceeding shall not preclude civil proceedings under this section; however, for good cause shown, on motion by the district attorney, the court may stay civil forfeiture proceedings during the criminal trial for related criminal indictment or information alleging a violation of this section. Such a stay shall not be available pending an appeal.

(5) Except as otherwise provided by this section, all proceedings hereunder shall be governed by the provisions of the Mississippi Rules of Civil Procedure.

(6) The issue shall be determined by the court alone, and the hearing on the claim shall be held within sixty (60) days after service of the petition unless continued for good cause. The district attorney shall have the burden of showing by clear and convincing proof that forfeiture of the property is appropriate.

(7) Any person who asserts a successful claim in accordance with subsection (3) of this section shall be awarded the seized property by the court, together with costs of filing such action. All property as to which no claim is filed, or as to which no successful claim is made, may be destroyed, sold at a public sale, retained for use by the seizing agency or transferred without charge to any law enforcement agency of the state for use by it. Property that is sold shall be sold by the circuit court at a public auction for cash to the highest and best bidder after advertising the sale for at least once each week for three (3) consecutive weeks, the last notice to appear not more than ten (10) days nor less than five (5) days prior to such sale in a newspaper having a general circulation in the county. Such notice shall contain a description of the property to be sold and a statement of the time and place of sale. It shall not be necessary to the validity of such sale either to have the property present at the place of sale or to have the name of the owner thereof stated in such notice. The proceeds of the sale, less any expenses of concluding the sale, shall be deposited in the seizing agency’s general fund to be used only for approved law enforcement activity affecting the agency’s efforts to combat gang activities.

(8) Any action under the provisions of this section may be consolidated with any other action or proceedings pursuant to this section relating to the same property on motion of the district attorney.

Gang Participation (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 97-44-19. Aiding and Abetting; Crimes in Furtherance of Gang Activities; Penalties

(1) Any person who intentionally directs, participates, conducts, furthers, or assists in the commission of illegal gang activity shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than one (1) year nor more than one-half (1/2) of the maximum term of imprisonment provided for an underlying offense and may be fined an amount not to exceed Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00). Any sentence of imprisonment imposed pursuant to this section shall be in addition and consecutive to any sentence imposed for the underlying offense.

(2) Any person who is convicted of a felony or an attempted felony which is committed for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with any criminal street gang, with the intent to promote, further, or assist in the affairs of a criminal gang, shall, upon conviction of that felony, in addition and consecutive to the punishment prescribed for the felony or attempted felony of which he or she has been convicted, be imprisoned for not less than one (1) year nor more than one-half (1/2) of the maximum term of imprisonment provided for that offense.

(3) Any person who is convicted of an offense other than a felony which is committed for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with, any criminal street gang, with the specific intent to promote, further or assist in any criminal conduct or enterprise by gang members, shall, in addition and consecutive to the penalty provided for that offense, be imprisoned for an additional period of not more than one (1) year.

(4) Any person who knowingly and willfully sells or buys goods or performs services for a criminal street gang in furtherance of illegal activity shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than one (1) year nor more than one-half (1/2) of the maximum term of imprisonment provided for the underlying offense and may be fined an amount not to exceed Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00).

(5) The court may elect to suspend all or a part of any additional mandatory punishment or enhanced punishment provided for in this chapter to impose alternative punishment in the form of properly supervised community service or placement in an appropriate adolescent offender program, if available, only in an unusual case where the interest of justice would best be served, and if the court specifies on the record and enters into the minutes the circumstances and reasons that the interests of justice would best be served by that suspension of enhanced punishment.

Gang-Related Civil Causes of Action (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 97-44-5. Civil Cause of Action

(1) A civil cause of action is hereby created in favor of any public authority expending money, allocating or reallocating police, firefighting, emergency or other personnel or resources, or otherwise incurring any loss, deprivation or injury, or sustaining any damage, impairment or harm whatsoever, proximately caused by any criminal activity.

(2) The cause of action created by this chapter shall lie against:

(a) Any street gang in whose name, for whose benefit, on whose behalf or under whose direction the act was committed; and

(b) Any gang officer or director who causes, orders, suggests, authorizes, consents to, agrees to, requests, acquiesces in or ratifies any such act; and

(c) Any gang member who, in the furtherance of or in connection with, any gang-related activity, commits any such act; and

(d) Any gang officer, director, leader or member.

(3) The cause of action authorized by this chapter shall be brought by the Attorney General, the district attorney or attorneys, or the county attorney, or by his or their respective designees. This cause of action shall be in addition to any other civil or criminal proceeding authorized by the laws of this state or by federal law, and shall not be construed as requiring the prosecutor to elect a civil, rather than criminal, remedy, or as replacing any other cause of action. Liability of the gang, its officers, directors, leaders and members shall be joint and several subject only to the apportionment and allocation of punitive damage authorized under 97-44-13.

Mississippi § 97-44-7. Filing of Complaint

(1) An action may be commenced under this chapter by the filing of a complaint as in civil cases.

(2) A complaint filed under this chapter, and all other ancillary or collateral matters arising therefrom, including matter relating to discovery, motions, trial and the perfection or execution of judgments shall be subject to the Rules of Civil Procedure, except as may be otherwise provided in this chapter, or except as the court may otherwise order upon motion of the prosecutor in matters relating to immunity or the physical safety of witnesses.

(3) The complaint shall name the Attorney General or his designee, if a complainant, each complaining district attorney or his designee, each complaining county attorney, and the public authority represented by him or by them.

(4) The complaint shall also name as defendants the gang, all known gang officers, and any gang members specifically identified or alleged in the complaint as having participated in a gang-related criminal activity. The complaint may also name, as a class of defendants, all unknown gang members.

(5) When, at any point prior to trial, other specific gang officers or members become known, the complaint may be amended to include any such person as a named defendant.

(6) Any individual who suffers any injury under the provisions of this chapter shall have the right to file a civil action in his or her name.

Mississippi § 97-44-9. Venue

(1) In an action brought under this chapter, venue shall lie in any county where an act charged in the complaint as part of a gang-related criminal activity was committed.

(2) It shall not be necessary for all offenses necessary to establishing a criminal activity to have occurred in any one county where the district attorneys or county attorneys of several counties, or their designees, each complaining of any offense, elected to join in a complaint. In such instance, it shall be sufficient that the complaint, taken as a whole, alleges a gang-related criminal activity, and each count of any such joint complaint shall be considered as cumulative to other counts for purposes of alleging or demonstrating such an activity.

(3) Where an activity is alleged to have been committed or to have occurred in more than one county, the district attorney or county attorney of each such county, or their designees, may join their several causes of action in a single complaint, which may be filed in any such county agreed to by or among them, but no such joinder shall be had without the consent of the district attorney or county attorney having jurisdiction over each offense alleged as part of the activity.

Mississippi § 97-44-11. Service of Process

(1) All street gangs and street gang members engaged in a gang-related criminal activity within this state impliedly consent to service of process upon them as set forth in this section, or as may be otherwise authorized by the Rules of Civil Procedure.

(2) Service of process upon a street gang may be had by leaving a copy of the complaint and summons directed to any officer of such gang, commanding the gang to appear and answer the complaint or otherwise plead at a time and place certain:

(a) With any gang officer; or

(b) With any individual member of the gang simultaneously named therein; or

(c) In the manner provided for service by publication in a civil action; or

(d) With any parent, legal guardian or legal custodian of any persons charged with a gang-related offense when any person sued civilly under this chapter is under seventeen (17) years of age and is also charged criminally or as a delinquent minor; or

(e) With the director of any agency or department of this state who is the legal guardian, guardianship administrator or custodian of any person sued under this chapter; or

(f) With the probation or parole officer of any person sued under this chapter; or

(g) With such other person or agent as the court may, upon petition of the district attorney or his designee or the county attorney, authorize as appropriate and reasonable under all of the circumstances.

(3) If after being summoned a street gang does not appear, the court shall enter an answer for the street gang neither affirming nor denying the allegations of the complaint but demanding strict proof thereof, and proceed to trial and judgment without further process.

(4) When any person is named as a defendant street gang member in any complaint, or subsequently becomes known and is added or joined as a named defendant, service of process may be had as authorized or provided for in the Rules of Civil Procedure for service of process in a civil case.

Mississippi § 97-44-13. Damages

(1) In any action brought under this chapter, and upon the verified application of the district attorney or his designee or the county attorney, the circuit court may at any time enter such restraining orders, injunctions or other prohibitions, or order such other relief as it deems proper, including but not limited to ordering any person to divest himself of any involvement or interest, direct or indirect, in any illegal street gang activity and imposing other reasonable restrictions on the future illegal activities of any defendant.

(2) A final judgment in favor of a public authority under this chapter shall entitle it to recover compensatory damages for all damages, losses, impairments or other harm proximately caused, together with the costs of the suit and reasonable attorney’s fees. Punitive damages may be assessed against any street gang, against any street gang officer or member found guilty of actual participation in, or to be legally accountable for, a criminal activity under this chapter. One hundred percent (100%) of punitive damages awarded will be expended by the public authority to implement preventative programs for juveniles or to fund existing programs.

Gang-Related Definitions (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 97-3-115. Carjacking Act Definitions

The following words and phrases shall have the meanings ascribed herein unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

"Carjacking" means taking of a motor vehicle from another person’s immediate actual possession knowingly or recklessly by force or violence, whether against resistance or by sudden or stealthy seizure or snatching, or by putting in fear, or attempting to do so, or by any other means.

"Motor vehicle" includes every device in, upon or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, which is self-propelled.

Mississippi § 97-3-117. Carjacking, Violations and Punishment

(1) Whoever shall knowingly or recklessly by force or violence, whether against resistance or by sudden or stealthy seizure or snatching, or by putting in fear, or attempting to do so, or by any other means shall take a motor vehicle from another person’s immediate actual possession shall be guilty of carjacking.

(a) A person who is convicted of carjacking shall be fined not more than Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00) and be committed to the custody of the State Department of Corrections for not more than fifteen (15) years.

(b) A person who is convicted of attempted carjacking shall receive the same punishment as the person who is convicted of carjacking.

(2) Whoever commits the offense of carjacking while armed with or having readily available any pistol or other firearm or imitation thereof or other dangerous or deadly weapon, including a sawed-off shotgun, shotgun, machine gun, rifle, dirk, bowie knife, butcher knife, switchblade, razor, blackjack, billy, or metallic or other false knuckles, or any object capable of inflicting death or serious bodily harm, shall be guilty of armed carjacking.

(a) Any person who is convicted of armed carjacking shall be fined not more than Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00) and be committed to the custody of the State Department of Corrections for not more than thirty (30) years.

(b) Any person who is convicted of attempted armed carjacking shall receive the same punishment as the person who is convicted of armed carjacking.

(3) Any person convicted of a second or subsequent offense under this section shall be fined an amount up to twice that otherwise authorized and shall be imprisoned for a term up to twice the term otherwise authorized.

Mississippi § 97-44-3. Definitions

For the purposes of this chapter, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings ascribed herein, unless the context clearly requires otherwise:

(a) "Street gang" or "gang" or "organized gang" or "criminal street gang" means any combination, confederation, alliance, network, conspiracy, understanding, or other similar conjoining, in law or in fact, of three (3) or more persons with an established hierarchy that, through its membership or through the agency of any member, engages in felonious criminal activity.

For purposes of this chapter, it shall not be necessary to show that a particular conspiracy, combination or conjoining of persons possesses, acknowledges or is known by any common name, insignia, flag, means of recognition, secret signal or code, creed, belief, structure, leadership or command structure, method of operation or criminal enterprise, concentration or specialty, membership, age or other qualifications, initiation rites, geographical or territorial situs or boundary or location, or other unifying mark, manner, protocol or method of expressing or indicating membership when the conspiracy’s existence, in law or in fact, can be demonstrated by a preponderance of the competent evidence. However, any evidence reasonably tending to show or demonstrate, in law or in fact, the existence of or membership in any conspiracy, confederation or other association described herein, or probative of the existence of or membership in any such association, shall be admissible in any action or proceeding brought under this chapter.

(b) "Public authority" means the state and political subdivisions as defined in Section 11-46-1, Mississippi Code of 1972.

(c) "Street gang member" or "gang member" means any person who actually and in fact belongs to a gang, and any person who knowingly acts in the capacity of an agent for or accessory to, or is legally accountable for, or voluntarily associates himself with a gang-related criminal activity, whether in a preparatory, executory or cover-up phase of any activity, or who knowingly performs, aids or abets any such activity.

(d) "Street gang related" or "gang-related" means any criminal activity, enterprise, pursuit or undertaking directed by, ordered by, authorized by, consented to, agreed to, requested by, acquiesced in, or ratified by any gang leader, officer or governing or policymaking person or authority, or by any agent, representative or deputy of any such officer, person or authority:

(i) With intent to increase the gang’s size, membership, prestige, dominance or control in any geographical area; or

(ii) With intent to exact revenge or retribution for the gang or any member of the gang; or

(iii) With intent to provide the gang with any advantage in, or any control or dominance over, any criminal market sector, including but not limited to the unlawful manufacture, delivery, possession or sale of controlled substances; arson; traffic in stolen property or stolen credit cards; traffic in prostitution, obscenity or pornography; or that involves robbery, armed robbery, burglary or larceny; or

(iv) With intent to obstruct justice, or intimidate or eliminate any witness against the gang or any member of the gang; or

(v) With intent to otherwise, directly or indirectly, cause any benefit, aggrandizement, gain, profit or other advantage whatsoever to or for the gang, its reputation, influence or membership.

Gang-Related Funding (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 37-3-82. Mississippi Community Oriented Policing Services in Schools Grant Program

(1) There is hereby established the Mississippi Community Oriented Policing Services in Schools (MCOPS) grant program in the State Department of Education to provide funding, pursuant to specific appropriation by the Legislature therefor, to assist law enforcement agencies in providing additional School Resource Officers to engage in community policing in and around primary and secondary schools. The MCOPS program shall authorize the State Department of Education to make grants to increase deployment of law enforcement officers in order (a) to increase or enhance community policing in this state, (b) that trained, sworn enforcement officers assigned to schools play an integral part in the development and/or enhancement of a comprehensive school safety plan, and (c) that the presence of these officers shall provide schools with a direct link to local law enforcement agencies.

(2) The MCOPS program shall meet the following requirements and standards:

(a) This program shall provide an incentive for law enforcement agencies to build collaborative partnerships with the school community and to use community policing efforts to combat school violence and implement educational programs to improve student and school safety.

(b) The additional School Resource Officers must devote at least seventy-five percent (75%) of their time to work in and around primary and secondary schools, in addition to the time that School Resource Officers are devoting in the absence of the MCOPS in Schools grant.

(c) The MCOPS in Schools program shall provide a maximum state contribution of up to Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00) per officer position over the one-year grant period, to be matched from local funds on a 50/50 matching basis. Officers paid with MCOPS funds may be employed by the local law enforcement agency or by the local school district. MCOPS funds may be used to pay for entry-level salaries and benefits of newly trained additional School Resource Officers and may be used to pay the salaries and benefits of School Resource Officers employed prior to July 1, 2013. All jurisdictions that apply must demonstrate that they have primary law enforcement authority over the school(s) identified in their application and demonstrate their inability to implement this project without state assistance. Schools or law enforcement agencies may not reduce its overall federal, state, locally funded level of sworn officers (including other School Resource Officers or other sworn officers assigned to the schools) as a result of applying for or receiving MCOPS in Schools grant funding. MCOPS in Schools funding may be used to rehire sworn officers previously employed who have been laid off for financial reasons unrelated to the availability of the MCOPS in Schools grant, but must obtain prior written approval from the State Department of Education.

(f) [So in original bill. Probably should be “(d)”.] School Resource Officers (SROs) may serve in a variety of roles, including, but not limited to, that of a law enforcement officer/safety specialist, law-related educator, and problem-solver/community liaison. These officers may teach programs such as crime prevention, substance abuse prevention, and gang resistance as well as monitor and assist troubled students through mentoring programs. The School Resource Officer(s) may also identify physical changes in the environment that may reduce crime in and around the schools, as well as assist in developing school policies which address criminal activity and school safety.

Gangs and Correctional Facilities (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 47-5-2. Corrections Investigative Taskforce; Members; Duties

(1) There is hereby created the Corrections Investigative Taskforce which shall consist of the following members: the Attorney General; State Auditor; the Chief Executive Officer of the Bureau of Narcotics, or his designee; the Chief Executive Officer of the Department of Public Safety, or his designee; the Chairman of the Senate Corrections Committee and the Chairman of the House Penitentiary Committee.

(2) The taskforce shall:

(a) Conduct or cause to be conducted periodic investigation of the Department of Corrections; (b) Study and make recommendations on correctional policies, including, but not limited to:

(ii) Inmate gang activity;

Gangs and Schools (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 37-3-82. Mississippi Community Oriented Policing Services in Schools Grant Program

(1) There is hereby established the Mississippi Community Oriented Policing Services in Schools (MCOPS) grant program in the State Department of Education to provide funding, pursuant to specific appropriation by the Legislature therefor, to assist law enforcement agencies in providing additional School Resource Officers to engage in community policing in and around primary and secondary schools. The MCOPS program shall authorize the State Department of Education to make grants to increase deployment of law enforcement officers in order (a) to increase or enhance community policing in this state, (b) that trained, sworn enforcement officers assigned to schools play an integral part in the development and/or enhancement of a comprehensive school safety plan, and (c) that the presence of these officers shall provide schools with a direct link to local law enforcement agencies.

(2) The MCOPS program shall meet the following requirements and standards:

(a) This program shall provide an incentive for law enforcement agencies to build collaborative partnerships with the school community and to use community policing efforts to combat school violence and implement educational programs to improve student and school safety.

(b) The additional School Resource Officers must devote at least seventy-five percent (75%) of their time to work in and around primary and secondary schools, in addition to the time that School Resource Officers are devoting in the absence of the MCOPS in Schools grant.

(c) The MCOPS in Schools program shall provide a maximum state contribution of up to Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00) per officer position over the one-year grant period, to be matched from local funds on a 50/50 matching basis. Officers paid with MCOPS funds may be employed by the local law enforcement agency or by the local school district. MCOPS funds may be used to pay for entry-level salaries and benefits of newly trained additional School Resource Officers and may be used to pay the salaries and benefits of School Resource Officers employed prior to July 1, 2013. All jurisdictions that apply must demonstrate that they have primary law enforcement authority over the school(s) identified in their application and demonstrate their inability to implement this project without state assistance. Schools or law enforcement agencies may not reduce its overall federal, state, locally funded level of sworn officers (including other School Resource Officers or other sworn officers assigned to the schools) as a result of applying for or receiving MCOPS in Schools grant funding. MCOPS in Schools funding may be used to rehire sworn officers previously employed who have been laid off for financial reasons unrelated to the availability of the MCOPS in Schools grant, but must obtain prior written approval from the State Department of Education.

(f) [So in original bill. Probably should be “(d)”.] School Resource Officers (SROs) may serve in a variety of roles, including, but not limited to, that of a law enforcement officer/safety specialist, law-related educator, and problem-solver/community liaison. These officers may teach programs such as crime prevention, substance abuse prevention, and gang resistance as well as monitor and assist troubled students through mentoring programs. The School Resource Officer(s) may also identify physical changes in the environment that may reduce crime in and around the schools, as well as assist in developing school policies which address criminal activity and school safety.

Mississippi § 37-11-55. Code of Student Conduct; Required Subjects to be Addressed

The local school board shall adopt and make available to all teachers, school personnel, students and parents or guardians, at the beginning of each school year, a code of student conduct developed in consultation with teachers, school personnel, students and parents or guardians. The code shall be based on the rules governing student conduct and discipline adopted by the school board and shall be made available at the school level in the student handbook or similar publication. The code shall include, but not be limited to:

(g) Policies and procedures specifically concerning gang-related activities in the school, on school property or vehicles, or at school-related activities.

Gangs and Weapons (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 97-3-110. Seizure and Forfeiture of Firearms and Motor Vehicles; Unlawful Possession and Drive-By Shootings or Bombings by Minors

(1) Whenever a person under eighteen (18) years of age is unlawfully in possession of a firearm, the firearm shall be seized and, after an adjudication of delinquency or conviction, shall be subject to forfeiture.

(2) Whenever a person under eighteen (18) years of age unlawfully discharges a firearm in or throws or ejects a bomb from a motor vehicle in violation of Section 97-3-109, Mississippi Code of 1972, the motor vehicle shall be subject to seizure and, after an adjudication of delinquency or conviction, be subject to forfeiture pursuant to the procedures set forth in Section 97-3-111, Mississippi Code of 1972.

Mississippi § 97-44-17. Forfeiture of Firearms, Ammunition, and Dangerous Weapons Used by Criminal Street Gangs; Disposition of Property Seized; Procedure.

(1) Any firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon in the possession of a member of a criminal street gang may be seized by any law enforcement agency or peace officer when the law enforcement agency or peace officer has probable cause to believe that the firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon is or has been used by a gang in the commission of illegal activity.

(2) The district attorney or an attorney for the seizing agency shall initiate, in a civil action, forfeiture proceedings by petition in the circuit courts as to any property seized pursuant to the provisions of this section within thirty (30) days of seizure. The district attorney shall provide notice of the filing of the petition to those members of the gang who become known to law enforcement officials as a result of the seizure and any related arrests, and to any person determined by law enforcement officials to be the owner of any of the property involved. After initial notice of the filing of the petition, the court shall assure that all persons so notified continue to receive notice of all subsequent proceedings related to the property.

(3) Any person who claims an interest in any seized property shall, in order to assert a claim that the property should not be forfeited, file a notice with the court, without necessity of paying costs, of the intent to establish either of the following:

(a) That the persons asserting the claim did not know of, could not have known of, or had no reason to believe in its use by a gang in the commission of illegal activity; or

(b) That the law enforcement officer lacked the requisite reasonable belief that the property was or had been used by a gang in the commission of illegal activity.

(4) An acquittal or dismissal in a criminal proceeding shall not preclude civil proceedings under this section; however, for good cause shown, on motion by the district attorney, the court may stay civil forfeiture proceedings during the criminal trial for related criminal indictment or information alleging a violation of this section. Such a stay shall not be available pending an appeal.

(5) Except as otherwise provided by this section, all proceedings hereunder shall be governed by the provisions of the Mississippi Rules of Civil Procedure.

(6) The issue shall be determined by the court alone, and the hearing on the claim shall be held within sixty (60) days after service of the petition unless continued for good cause. The district attorney shall have the burden of showing by clear and convincing proof that forfeiture of the property is appropriate.

(7) Any person who asserts a successful claim in accordance with subsection (3) of this section shall be awarded the seized property by the court, together with costs of filing such action. All property as to which no claim is filed, or as to which no successful claim is made, may be destroyed, sold at a public sale, retained for use by the seizing agency or transferred without charge to any law enforcement agency of the state for use by it. Property that is sold shall be sold by the circuit court at a public auction for cash to the highest and best bidder after advertising the sale for at least once each week for three (3) consecutive weeks, the last notice to appear not more than ten (10) days nor less than five (5) days prior to such sale in a newspaper having a general circulation in the county. Such notice shall contain a description of the property to be sold and a statement of the time and place of sale. It shall not be necessary to the validity of such sale either to have the property present at the place of sale or to have the name of the owner thereof stated in such notice. The proceeds of the sale, less any expenses of concluding the sale, shall be deposited in the seizing agency’s general fund to be used only for approved law enforcement activity affecting the agency’s efforts to combat gang activities.

(8) Any action under the provisions of this section may be consolidated with any other action or proceedings pursuant to this section relating to the same property on motion of the district attorney.

Miscellaneous Gang Legislation (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 97-44-1. Short Title

This chapter shall be known as the "Mississippi Streetgang Act."

Public Nuisance/Premises Used by Gangs (view all states for this subject)

Mississippi § 97-44-15. Nuisance Abatement; Injunction

(1) Every private building or place used by members of a criminal street gang for the commission of illegal activity is a nuisance and may be the subject of an injunction or cause of action for damages or for abatement of the nuisance as provided for in this chapter.

(2) Any person may file a petition for injunctive relief with the appropriate court seeking eviction from or closure of any premises used for commission of illegal activity by a criminal street gang. Upon clear and convincing proof by the plaintiff that the premises are being used by members of a criminal street gang for the commission of illegal activity, the court may order the owner of record or the lessee of the premises to remove or evict the persons from the premises and order the premises sealed, prohibit further use of the premises, or enter such order as may be necessary to prohibit the premises from being used for the commission of illegal activity by a gang and to abate the nuisance.

(3) Any action for injunction, damages, abatement, or other relief filed pursuant to this section shall proceed according to the provisions of the Rules of Civil Procedure.

(4) The court shall not issue an injunction or assess a civil penalty against any owner of record or the lessee of the private building or place, unless there is a showing by clear and convincing proof that the person knew or should have known or had been notified of the use of the premises by a gang for illegal activity. Any injunctive relief other than that specifically authorized in subsection (6) of this section shall be limited to that which is necessary to protect the health and safety of the residents or the public or that which is necessary to prevent further illegal activity.

(5) A petition for injunction shall not be filed until thirty (30) days after notice of the unlawful use or criminal conduct has been provided to the owner of record or the lessee, by mail, return receipt requested, postage prepaid, to the owner’s last known address, or by personal service. If the premises are abandoned or closed, or if the whereabouts of the owner of record or lessee is unknown, all notices, process, pleadings, and orders required to be delivered or served under this section may be attached to a door of the premises and mailed, return receipt requested, to the last address which is reflected on the ad valorem tax receipt on file in the office of the tax collector of the county where the property is located, and this shall have the same effect as personal service on the owner of record or lessee. No injunctive relief authorized by subsection (6) of this section shall be issued in the form of a temporary restraining order.

(6) If the court has previously issued injunctive relief ordering the owner of record or the lessee of the premises to close the premises or otherwise to keep the premises from being used for the commission by a gang of illegal activity, the court, upon proof of failure to comply with the terms of the injunction and that the premises continue to be used by a gang for the commission of illegal activity, may do one or more of the following:

(a) Order the premises demolished and cleared at the cost of the owner.

(b) Order the premises sold at public auction and the proceeds from the sale, minus the costs of the sale and the expenses of bringing the action, delivered to the owner.

(c) Order the defendant to pay damages to persons or local governing authorities who have been damaged or injured or have incurred expense as a result of the defendant’s failure to take reasonable steps or precautions to comply with the terms of any injunction issued pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.

(d) Assess a civil penalty not to exceed Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00) against the defendant based upon the severity of the nuisance and its duration. In establishing the amount of any civil penalty, the court shall consider all of the following factors:

(i) The actions taken by the defendant to mitigate or correct the problem at the private building or place or the reasons why no such action was taken.

(ii) Any failure of the plaintiff to provide notice as required by subsection (5) of this section.

(iii) Any other factor deemed by the court to be relevant.

(7) No nonprofit, fraternal or charitable organization which is conducting its affairs with ordinary care or skill nor any governmental entity shall be enjoined pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.

(8) Nothing in this chapter shall preclude any aggrieved person from seeking any other remedy provided by law.


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