H. B. 2393

          (By Delegate Fleischauer, Marshall, Barill, Lynch, Manypenny, Iaquinta, Fragale, Longstreth, Eldridge, Marcum and Sobonya)

          [Introduced February 13, 2013; referred to the

          Committee on the Judiciary then Finance.]

A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated §61-5-17a, relating to making it a criminal offense for any person to intentionally interfere with or prevent an individual from calling for the assistance of emergency service personnel; defining terms; and establishing penalties.

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 §61-5-17a, to read as follows:


§61-5-17a. Willful interference with a call for emergency services.
_____(a) A person, with the intent to deprive any other person of emergency services, may not interfere with or prevent another person from:
_____(1) Using or accessing a 911 emergency telephone system;
_____(2) Making a report to a law-enforcement officer or agency or fire department; or
_____(3) Requesting emergency medical assistance.
_____(b) A person who violates subsection (a) of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction shall be confined in jail for not more than six months, or fined not less than $100 nor more than $500, or both.
_____(c) As used in this section, to "interfere with or prevent" includes, but is not limited to, the seizure, concealment, obstructing access to or disabling or disconnection of a telephone, telephone line or equipment or other communication device.

     NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to make it a crime to interfere with or prevent a person from reporting a crime or seeking emergency assistance.

     §61-5-17a is new; therefore, it has been completely underscored.