HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 7
(By Delegates Armstead, Rowan,
Overington and Azinger)
[Introduced February 16, 2009; referred to the Committee
on Constitutional Revision then the Judiciary.]
Resolved by the Legislature of West Virginia, two thirds of
the members elected to each house agreeing thereto:
Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the State of West
Virginia, amending section six, article three thereof,
relating to use of electronic surveillance in a person's home
by the government without a warrant; numbering and designating
such proposed amendment; and providing a summarized statement
of the purpose of such proposed amendment.
That the question of ratification or rejection of an amendment
to the Constitution of the State of West Virginia be submitted to
the voters of the state at the next general election to be held in
the year two thousand ten, which proposed amendment is that section
six, article three thereof be amended and reenacted to read as
ARTICLE III. BILL OF RIGHTS.
§6. Unreasonable searches and seizures prohibited.
The rights of the citizens to be secure in their houses,
persons, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and
seizures, shall not be violated. No warrant shall issue except
upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, particularly
describing the place to be searched, or the person or thing to be
seized. A warrant is not required for an agent of the government
who consents to electronic surveillance to obtain information by
means of electronic surveillance in the home of a person which is
not prohibited by the fourth amendment to the United States
Constitution under decisions of the United States Supreme Court
when construing the fourth amendment.
That in accordance with the provisions of
article eleven, chapter three of the Code of West Virginia, 1931,
as amended, such proposed amendment is hereby numbered "Amendment
No. 1" and designated as the "Warrantless searches of homes by
electronic surveillance home searched amendment," and the purpose
of the proposed amendment is summarized as follows: "To allow use
of electronic surveillance in a person's home by the government
without a warrant when not prohibited by the United States
NOTE: The purpose of this resolution is to propose an
amendment to the State Constitution that would allow an agent of
the government, without first obtaining a warrant, to obtain
information or evidence by means of electronic surveillance in the
home of a person when that agent consents to the surveillance and
in instances where this is not prohibited by the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from
the present Constitution, and underscoring indicates new language
that would be added.