20-49.1. Supplemental police authority of Division officers.

(a) In addition to the law enforcement authority granted in G.S. 20-49 or elsewhere, the Commissioner and the officers and inspectors of the Division whom the Commissioner designates have the authority to enforce criminal laws under any of the following circumstances:

(1) When they have probable cause to believe that a person has committed a criminal act in their presence and at the time of the violation they are engaged in the enforcement of laws otherwise within their jurisdiction.

(2) When they are asked to provide temporary assistance by the head of a State or local law enforcement agency or his designee and the request is within the scope of the agency's subject matter jurisdiction.

While acting pursuant to this subsection, the Division officers shall have the same powers vested in law enforcement officers by statute or common law. When acting pursuant to subdivision (2) of this subsection, the Division officers shall not be considered an officer, employee, or agent of the State or local law enforcement agency or designee asking for temporary assistance. Nothing in this section shall be construed to expand the Division officers' authority to initiate or conduct an independent investigation into violations of criminal laws outside the scope of their subject matter or territorial jurisdiction.

(b) In addition to the law enforcement authority granted in G.S. 20-49 or elsewhere, the Commissioner and the officers and inspectors of the Division whom the Commissioner designates have the authority to investigate drivers license fraud and identity thefts related to drivers license fraud and to make arrests for these offenses. (2004-148, s. 1.)