(a) Any person who causes a disruption of communications services or public utility services by the theft or by intentionally damaging communications or public utility equipment and by such conduct causes:
(1) A disruption of communication services or public utility services to ten or more households or subscribers; or
(2) A loss in the value of the property in an amount of one thousand dollars or more, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, for a first offense, shall be sentenced to not more than two thousand hours of court-approved community service or fined not more than $10,000, or both. For a second offense, the person is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof, shall be imprisoned in a state correctional facility not less than one nor more than five years or fined not more than $10,000, or both. For third and subsequent offenses, the person is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof, shall be imprisoned in a correctional facility for not less than one nor more than ten years, or fined not more than $10,000, or both.
(b) As used in this section, communications and public utility
equipment includes but is not limited to public safety
communications towers and equipment, telephone lines,
communications towers and tower equipment, radio towers and tower
equipment, railroad and other industrial safety communication
devices or systems, electric towers and equipment and electric
transmission and distribution lines.
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2016 Regular Session
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