Georgia Department of Law, from the office of Samuel S. Olens, Attorney General

Official Opinion 2014-2

November 13, 2014
To: 

Deputy Director

Georgia Crime Information Center

Re: 

Updating of crimes and offenses for which the Georgia Crime Information Center is authorized to collect and file fingerprints.

You have requested, in your letter of July 11, 2014, my opinion concerning whether any of the following misdemeanor offenses enacted during the 2014 Session of the General Assembly should be designated as offenses for which persons charged with violations are to be fingerprinted. 

Those offenses include: O.C.G.A. § 16-11-130.2 (entering a restricted area of airport possessing a weapon or long gun); O.C.G.A. § 16-11-90(b) (electronic transmission/post of video or photo depicting nudity or sexually explicit conduct without consent); O.C.G.A. § 16-8-14.1(a)(1) (refund fraud $500 or less); O.C.G.A. § 16-8-22(B) (cargo theft, value less than $1500); O.C.G.A. § 33-24-53 (healthcare owner/professional paid by attorney to solicit clients, patients, for asserting claims); O.C.G.A. § 7-1-696 (regulation of the sale/cashing of checks/money orders/drafts –violation of Title 7, Chapter 1, Article 4 or Title 7, Chapter 1, Article 4A); O.C.G.A. § 7-1-709 (regulation of the sale/cashing of checks/money orders/drafts–violation of Title 7, Chapter 1, Article 4 or Title 7, Chapter 1, Article 4A).

In addition to the list of fingerprintable offenses mandated by statute, O.C.G.A. § 35-3-33 (a)(1)(A)(v) provides that the Attorney General may designate any other offense as one for which those charged with violations are to be fingerprinted.

The first misdemeanor offense is O.C.G.A. § 16-11-130.2.  That Code section provides that it shall be a misdemeanor to enter the restricted access area of a commercial service airport, in or beyond the airport security screening checkpoint, knowingly possessing or knowingly having under his or her control a weapon or long gun.  I hereby designate any misdemeanor offenses arising under O.C.G.A. § 16-11-130.2 as offenses for which those charged are to be fingerprinted.

The second misdemeanor offense is O.C.G.A. § 16‑11‑90(b), which prohibits nude or sexually explicit electronic transmissions.  That Code section provides that one violates it if he or she, knowing the content of a transmission or post, knowingly and without the consent of the depicted person, electronically transmits or posts or causes the electronic transmission or posting, in one or more transmissions or posts, a photograph or video which depicts nudity or sexually explicit conduct of an adult when the transmission or post is harassment or causes financial loss to the depicted person and serves no legitimate purpose to the depicted person.  I hereby designate any misdemeanor offenses arising under O.C.G.A. § 16‑11‑90(b) as offenses for which those charged are to be fingerprinted.

The third misdemeanor offense is O.C.G.A. § 16‑8‑14.1(a)(1).  However, I will address O.C.G.A. § 16‑18‑14.1(a), including both subsections that address refund fraud of $500 or less.  That Code section provides it shall be unlawful for a person to give a false or fictitious name or address or to give the name or address of another person without that person’s approval or permission for the purpose of obtaining a refund from a store or retail establishment for merchandise.  That Code section also provides it shall be unlawful for a person to obtain a refund in the form of cash, check, credit on a credit or debit card, a merchant gift card, or credit in any other form from a store or retail establishment using a driver’s license not issued to such person, a driver’s license containing false information, an identification card containing false information, an altered identification card, or an identification card not issued to such person.  I hereby designate any misdemeanor offenses arising under O.C.G.A. § 16‑18‑14.1(a) as offenses for which those charged are to be fingerprinted.

The fourth misdemeanor offense is O.C.G.A. § 16-8-22, cargo theft of $1,500 or less.  That Code section provides that a person commits the offense of cargo theft when he or she unlawfully takes or, being in lawful possession thereof, unlawfully appropriates, any vehicle engaged in commercial transportation of cargo or any appurtenance thereto, including, without limitation, any trailer, semitrailer, container, or other associated equipment, or the cargo being transported therein or thereon, which is the property of another with the intention of depriving such other person of the property, regardless of the manner in which the property is taken or appropriated; or any trailer, semitrailer, container, or other associated equipment, or the cargo being transported therein or thereon, which is deployed by or used by a law enforcement agency, which is the property of another with the intention of depriving such other person of the property, regardless of the manner in which the property is taken or appropriated.  I hereby designate any misdemeanor offenses arising under O.C.G.A. § 16‑8‑22 as offenses for which those charged are to be fingerprinted.

The fifth misdemeanor offense is O.C.G.A. § 33-24-53.  That Code section provides that it is unlawful for any person in an individual capacity or in a capacity as a law enforcement officer, law enforcement records staff member, wrecker services staff member, emergency staff member, physician, hospital employee, or attorney to solicit, release, or sell any information relating to the parties of a motor vehicle collision for personal financial gain.  I hereby designate any misdemeanor offenses arising under O.C.G.A. § 33-24-53 as offenses for which those charged are to be fingerprinted.

The sixth misdemeanor offense you list is O.C.G.A. § 7-1-696, violation of regulations for the sale of payment instruments.  That Code section sets penalties for violation of Article 4 of Title 7, Chapter 1.  An offense arising from a violation of this Code section does not, at this time, appear to be an offense for which fingerprinting is required and I am not, at this time, designating this offense as one for which those charged are to be fingerprinted.

The seventh misdemeanor offense is O.C.G.A. § 7-1-709, violation of regulations for the cashing of payment instruments.  That Code section sets penalties for violation of Article 4A of Title 7, Chapter 1.  An offense arising from a violation of this Code section does not, at this time, appear to be an offense for which fingerprinting is required and I am not, at this time, designating this offense as one for which those charged are to be fingerprinted.

I trust that my revisions of the specific designations of those offenses for which persons charged with violations are to be fingerprinted will aid you in discharging your duties pursuant to the Georgia Crime Information Act.

Prepared by:

Mindy Park

Assistant Attorney General