19-2.3. Temporary order restraining removal of personal property from premises; service; punishment.

Where such application for a preliminary injunction is made, the court may, on application of the complainant showing good cause, issue an ex parte temporary restraining order in accordance with G.S. 1A-1, Rule 65(b), preserving the status quo and restraining the defendant and all other persons from removing or in any manner interfering with any evidence specifically described, or in any manner removing or interfering with the personal property and contents of the place where such nuisance is alleged to exist, until the decision of the court granting or refusing such preliminary injunction and until further order of the court thereon. Nothing herein shall be interpreted to allow the prior restraint of the distribution of any matter or the sale of the stock in trade, but an inventory and full accounting of all business transactions involving alleged obscene or lewd matter thereafter shall be required. The inventory provisions provided by this section shall not apply to nuisances occurring at a private dwelling place unless the court finds the private dwelling place is used for profit.

Any person, firm, or corporation enjoined pursuant to this section may file with the court a motion to dissolve any temporary restraining order. Such a motion shall be heard within 24 hours of the time a copy of the motion is served on the complaining party, or on the next day the superior courts are open in the district, whichever is later. At such hearing the complaining party shall have the burden of showing why the restraining order should be continued.

In the event a temporary restraining order is issued, it may be served in accordance with the provisions of G.S. 1A-1, Rule 4, or may be served by handing to and leaving a copy of such order with any person in charge of such place or residing therein, or by posting a copy thereof in a conspicuous place at or upon one or more of the principal doors or entrances to such place, or by such service under said Rule 4, delivery and posting. The officer serving such temporary restraining order shall forthwith enter upon the property and make and return into court an inventory of the personal property and contents situated in and used in conducting or maintaining such nuisance.

Any violation of such temporary restraining order is a contempt of court, and where such order is posted, mutilation or removal thereof, while the same remains in force, is a contempt of court, provided such posted order contains therein a notice to that effect. (1977, c. 819, s. 4; 1999-371, s. 6.)