Senate Bill No. 187
(By Senators Wooton, Snyder, Ross, Ball, Schoonover, Anderson,
Sharpe and Sprouse)
[Originating in the Committee on the Judiciary;
reported January 28, 1998.]
A BILL to amend article ten, chapter fifteen of the code of West
Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended,
by adding thereto a new section, designated section five,
relating to federal law-enforcement officers having
authority to enforce state, county and municipal laws while
in active service; and providing immunity from liability in
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That article ten, chapter fifteen of the code of West
Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, be
amended by adding thereto a new section, designated section five,
to read as follows:
ARTICLE 10. COOPERATION BETWEEN LAW-ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES.
§15-10-5. Federal officers peace-keeping authority.
(a) Notwithstanding any provision of this code to the
contrary, any person who is employed by the United States
government as a law-enforcement officer as enumerated in
subsection (b) of this section, shall have the authority to
enforce violations of the laws of this state granted to law- enforcement officers as are defined in section one, article
twenty-nine, chapter thirty of this code, with the exception of
state or local traffic laws or parking ordinances, where if the
violation of law is committed in the presence of the law- enforcement officer or the law-enforcement officer who is
rendering assistance to a duly authorized law-enforcement officer
of the state of West Virginia in an emergency or at the request
of that officer.
(b) This section applies to the following federal law- enforcement officers who are: (1) Employed full time; (2)
empowered to effect an arrest with or without a warrant for
violations of the United States code; and (3) authorized to carry
firearms in the performance of their duties:
(A) Department of justice. -- (i) Special agents of the
drug-enforcement administration; (ii) special agents of the
federal bureau of investigation; (iii) inspectors and special
agents of the immigration and naturalization service; and (iv)
marshals and deputy marshals of the United States marshals
(B) Department of treasury. -- (i) Special agents of the
bureau of alcohol, tobacco and firearms; (ii) inspectors and
special agents of the internal revenue service; (iii) inspectors
and special agents of the United States customs service; and (iv)
special agents of the United States secret service.
(C) United States postal service. -- Inspectors of the
United States postal inspection service.
(D) Special agents of the offices of the inspector general
and other criminal investigative components of United States
departments and agencies while conducting official business in
the state of West Virginia.
(E) Police officer empowered under Title 40, United States
code, employed at the federal bureau of investigation criminal
justice information services division facility at Clarksburg.
(c) When acting under the authority of this section, those
persons who are employed by the United States government as law- enforcement officers enumerated in subsection (b) of this section
shall have the same immunities from liability as law-enforcement
officers as defined in section one, article twenty-nine, chapter
thirty of this code.
(NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to grant federal law- enforcement officers the power to enforce the laws of this state
while engaged in law-enforcement activities. It also provides
for immunity from liability when so acting under certain