CHAPTER 25. DIVISION OF CORRECTIONS.
ARTICLE 4. CENTERS FOR HOUSING YOUNG ADULT OFFENDERS.
§25-4-1. Purpose of article.
The purpose of this article is to provide appropriate
facilities for the housing of young adult offenders convicted of or
pleading guilty to violation of law before courts with original
jurisdiction, who are amenable to discipline other than in close
confinement, and to give better opportunity to young adult
offenders for reformation and encouragement of self-discipline.
§25-4-2. Establishment of centers.
The West Virginia commissioner of corrections is authorized to
establish, operate and maintain centers to be operated in
connection with the state correctional system as provided in this
§25-4-3. Authority of commissioner of corrections.
The West Virginia commissioner of corrections has the
authority to acquire land and other property by purchase, grant,
gift or otherwise in connection with the establishment of centers
and to construct buildings, fences and other facilities, and to
acquire personal property necessary for the maintenance and
operation of the centers; to direct all needed improvements and
repairs necessary for the proper upkeep of the centers, and to
provide for the necessary food, medical treatment and safekeeping
of persons confined in the centers; and to employ personnel to
operate the centers and to provide the necessary work and other
programs for the offenders assigned to the centers.
WVC 25 - 4 - 4
Each center shall be under the direction of a warden who shall
have the minimum qualification of a college degree with a major in
criminal justice or a related field and the powers and duties as
described in sections eleven and eleven-a, article one of this
chapter. The warden shall be paid an annual salary to be fixed by
the Commissioner of Corrections. The warden, subject to the
authority of the commissioner, has the responsibility for the
overall operation of the center.
At each center the warden shall administer programming which
shall include the following components:
(1) A work program;
(2) An educational program in accordance with section
thirteen-f, article two, chapter eighteen of this code;
(3) A recreational program; and
(4) A counseling program with an emphasis on substance abuse
and life skills.
Acts, 1999 Reg. Sess., Ch. 64.
WVC 25 - 4 - 6
§25-4-6. Assignment of offenders to center; period of center
confinement; return to court; sentence or probation;
revocation of probation.
The circuit court may suspend the imposition of sentence of
any young adult, as defined in this section, convicted of or
pleading guilty to a felony offense, other than an offense
punishable by life imprisonment, including, but not limited to,
felony violations of the provisions of chapter seventeen-c of this
code, who had attained his or her eighteenth birthday but had not
reached his or her twenty-fourth birthday at the time the offense
was committed for which the offender is being sentenced and commit
the young adult to the custody of the West Virginia Commissioner of
Corrections to be assigned to a center: Provided,
That no person
over the age of twenty-five may be committed pursuant to this
section. Young adult offenders who have previously been committed
to a young adult offender center are not eligible for commitment to
this program. The period of confinement in the center shall be for
a period of not less than six months but not more than two years to
successfully complete the program requirements set by the warden.
The court shall order a presentence investigation to be conducted
and provide the warden with a copy of the presentence investigation
report, along with the commitment order.
If, in the opinion of the warden, the young adult offender is
an unfit person to remain in the center, the offender shall be
returned to the committing court to be dealt with further according to law. The offender is entitled to a hearing before the
committing court to review the warden's determination. The
standard for review is whether the warden, considering the
offender's overall record at the center and the offender's
compliance with the center's rules, policies, procedures, programs
and services, abused his or her discretion in determining that the
offender is an unfit person to remain in the center. At the
hearing before the committing court, the state need not offer
independent proof of the offender's disciplinary infractions
contained in the record of the center when opportunity for an
administrative hearing on those infractions was previously made
available at the institution. If the court upholds the warden's
determination, the court may sentence the offender for the crime
for which the offender was convicted. In his or her discretion,
the judge may allow the defendant credit on the sentence for time
the offender spent in the center.
A young adult offender shall be returned to the jurisdiction
of the court which originally committed the offender when, in the
opinion of the warden, the young adult offender has satisfactorily
completed the center training program. The offender is then
eligible for probation for the offense the offender was convicted
of or plead guilty to and the judge of the court shall immediately
place the offender on probation. If the court finds there is
reasonable cause to believe that the offender has engaged in new
criminal conduct between his or her release from the center and the sentencing hearing for the crime for which the offender was ordered
to the center, the judge may sentence the offender for the crime
for which the offender was first convicted, with credit for the
time spent at the center. In the event the offender's probation is
subsequently revoked, the judge shall impose the sentence the young
adult offender would have originally received had the offender not
been committed to the center and subsequently placed on probation.
The court shall, however, give the offender credit on his or her
sentence for the time spent in the center.
§25-4-7. Physical, educational and psychological examinations;
transfer and placement.
Every young adult offender committed under this article shall
be given complete physical, educational and psychological
examinations in the same manner and under the same protections and
requirements of subsections (b) and (c), section two, article one,
chapter twenty-eight of this code. In addition to those
requirements, all admission, transfer and placement requirements
and authority provided to the commissioner in subsections (d) and
(e), section two, article one, chapter twenty-eight of this code
§25-4-8. Labor, study or activities may be required.
Offenders assigned to centers may be required to labor on the
buildings and grounds of the center, in the making of forest roads,
for fire prevention and fire fighting, on forestation and
reforestation of public lands, on the making of fire trails and
firebreaks, on fire suppression, on building or improving public
parks or lands, or engage in any studies or activities prescribed
or permitted by the warden, subject to the approval of the
commissioner of corrections.
§25-4-9. Wages of offenders.
The West Virginia commissioner of corrections may provide for
the payment of wages to the offenders assigned to centers for the
work they perform.
§25-4-10. Authority to arrest inmates.
All officers and employees of a center have the power of peace
officers so far as necessary to take into custody center inmates.
WVC 25 - 4 - 11
§25-4-11. Escape; aiding escape.
(a) Any inmate of a center who shall escape from said center
or the custody of an officer or employee of such center shall be
guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof, be committed to
the custody of the commissioner of corrections for not more than
five years. A term of incarceration imposed pursuant to the
provisions of this section shall be imposed as a consecutive
sentence and not served concurrently with any sentence or period of
confinement previously imposed.
(b) Any person who willfully permits or aids any inmate of
such center to escape therefrom or conceals him with the intent of
enabling him to elude pursuit is guilty of a felony and, upon
conviction thereof, shall be committed to the custody of the
commissioner of corrections for not more than five years.
WVC 25 - 4 - 12
§25-4-12. Independent or cooperative establishment of centers.
The West Virginia commissioner of public institutions may
establish centers independently or in cooperation with the natural
resources commission of West Virginia on such terms as may be
agreed upon by the commissioner of public institutions and the
director of the department of natural resources.
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2015 Regular Session
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