When is Satellite Based Monitoring Required?

In all cases where a defendant has been convicted of a crime requiring sex offender registration, the court is required to conduct a hearing to determine whether the terms of registration, and whether the defendant must be placed on Satellite Based Monitoring (SBM). This hearing typically occurs at the time of sentencing, and requires the court to take certain steps.

Pursuant to North Carolina General Statute 14-208.40A, when a defendant has been convicted of a “Reportable Conviction” the District Attorney must present any evidence as to whether a defendant:

  1. Has been classified as a “Sexually Violent Predator
  2. Is a “reoffender”
    1. Note: This is different than being a “recidivist.” A recidivist is broader and includes any prior reportable conviction, whereas a “reoffender” requires the reportable convictions to also be felonies.
  3. The conviction is for an “Aggravated Offense
  4. The conviction was for either
    1. G.S. 14-27.23 (Statutory Rape of a Child by an Adult), or
    1. G.S. 14-27.28 (Statutory Sexual Offense with a Child by an Adult)
  5. The offense involved the physical, mental, or sexual abuse of a minor.

If the District Attorney finds evidence that the Defendant falls into any of the above-mentioned categories, then he is required by law to disclose it.

In turn, the Defendant may also present evidence to the court that the District Attorney’s information is wrong or inaccurate. After the State and the Defense have had an opportunity to speak, the court will determine whether the state has shown the defendant falls into any of the above-listed categories.

If the court makes a determination that the defendant falls into categories 1-4, then it will order that the defendant submit to a risk assessment, which must be completed within sixty days of the hearing date, and may be used for sentencing purposes for up to six months from the hearing date. The results of the assessment must be reported to the court within this time.

The court then uses the risk assessment to determine whether SBM is appropriate. If so, the court will order the defendant to enroll in SBM for ten years.

If the court determines that the defendant falls into category 5, and does not fall into categories 2,3, or 4, then the court will also order a risk assessment under the same terms as above. However, if the court finds that SBM is appropriate, then the court will order the defendant to enroll for “a period of time;” provided that it shall not exceed ten years.