(By Delegates Staton, Amores, Campbell,
Mahan and G. White)
[Introduced February 15, 2005; Referred to the committee on the
A BILL to amend the code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by
adding thereto a new section, designated §61-3-58, all
relating to criminal offenses involving the theft of mail
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended
by adding thereto a new section, designated §61-3-58, to read as
ARTICLE 3. CRIMES AGAINST PROPERTY.
§61-3-58. Criminal offenses involving the theft of mail matter.
(a) As used in this section:
(1) "Deprive" means (i) to withhold property of another
permanently or for so extended a period as to appropriate a major
portion of its economic value or with intent to restore only upon
payment of reward or other compensation; or (ii) to dispose of the
property so as to make it unlikely that the owner will recover it.
(2) "Mail matter" includes, but is not limited to, any letter,
postal card, package, bag, or other item.
(b) A person is guilty of theft of mail matter when with
intent to deprive the owner thereof he or she:
(2) by fraud or deception obtains;
(5) damages; or
any mail matter of another from any letterbox, mail receptacle, or
other authorized depository for mail matter, or from a letter
carrier, postal vehicle, or private mail box or which has been left
for collection or delivery adjacent thereto by the United States
(b) A person is guilty of possession of stolen mail matter
when he or she knowingly or having reason to believe that it has
been the subject of theft in violation of subsection (b):
(5) Deals in; or
any mail matter.
(d) Any person convicted for violating the provisions of subsections (b) or (c) of this section is guilty of a felony, and,
upon conviction thereof, shall be imprisoned in a state
correctional facility not less than one year nor more than five
years and fined not more than two thousand five hundred dollars.
Note: This bill creates a new felony offenses for the theft of
mail matter and the possession of stolen mail matter. The penalty
upon conviction is imprisonment for a period of not less than one
year nor more than five years and a fine of not more than $2,500.