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West Virginia Code


Chapter 61     Entire Code
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Chapter 61  |  Article 61 - 1  |  Section 9

WVC 61-1-1 §61-1-1. Treason defined; degree of proof.
Treason against the state shall consist only in levying war against it, or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.

WVC 61-1-2 §61-1-2. Punishment.
Whoever is guilty of treason against the State shall be punished by confinement in the penitentiary for life, or, at the discretion of the jury, or the discretion of the court when there is a plea of guilty, by confinement in the penitentiary for not less than three nor more than ten years.

WVC 61-1-3 §61-1-3. Failure to give information of treason; penalty.
If any person have any knowledge of treason against the state, and shall not, as soon as may be, give information thereof to the governor or some conservator of the peace, he shall be guilty of a felony, and, upon conviction, shall be fined not exceeding one thousand dollars, or by confinement in the penitentiary not less than one nor more than five years.

WVC 61-1-4 §61-1-4. Attempt to justify or uphold invasion or insurrection; penalty.
If any person shall attempt to justify or uphold an armed invasion of this state, or an organized insurrection therein, by speaking, writing, or printing, or by publishing or circulating any written or printed document, or in any other way whatever, during the continuance of such invasion or insurrection, he shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction, shall be fined not exceeding one thousand dollars, and be confined in jail not exceeding twelve months.

WVC 61-1-5 §61-1-5. Unlawful speeches, publications and communications.
It shall be unlawful for any person to speak, print, publish or communicate, by language, sign, picture or otherwise, any teachings, doctrines or counsels in sympathy with or in favor of ideals, institutions or forms of government hostile, inimical or antagonistic to those now or hereafter existing under the constitution and laws of this state or of the United States, or in sympathy with or in favor of the propriety, duty and necessity of crime, violence or other unlawful methods of terrorism, as a means of accomplishing economic or political reform, or in sympathy with or in favor of the overthrow of organized society, the unlawful destruction of property or the violation of law.

WVC 61 - 1 - 6 §61-1-6.

Acts, 2010 Reg. Sess., Ch. 34. WVC 61 - 1 - 7 §61-1-7. Penalty for unlawful speeches, publications and communications.
Any person violating any of the provisions of section five of this article, shall, for the first offense, be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction, shall be fined not less than $100 nor more than $500, or, in the discretion of the court, be confined in jail not exceeding twelve months, or both; and, for the second offense, shall be guilty of a felony, and, upon conviction shall be confined in a state correctional facility not less than one nor more than five years.

WVC 61-1-8 §61-1-8. Desecration of flag; penalty.
Any person who for exhibition or display shall place, or cause to be placed, any words, figures, marks, pictures, designs, drawings, or any advertisement of any nature, upon any flag, standard, color or ensign of the United States, or upon the state flag of this state, or shall expose or cause to be exposed to public view any such flag, standard, color or ensign, upon which shall have been printed, painted or otherwise placed, or to which shall be attached, appended, affixed or annexed, any words, figures, marks, pictures, designs, drawings, or any advertisement of any nature or kind, or who shall expose to public view, manufacture, sell, expose for sale, give away, or have in possession for sale or to give away, or for use for any purpose, any article or substance, being an article of merchandise or a receptacle of merchandise, or article or thing for carrying or transporting merchandise, upon which shall have been printed, painted, attached or otherwise placed, a representation of any such flag, standard, color or ensign, to advertise, call attention to, decorate, mark or distinguish the article or substance on which so placed, or who shall publicly mutilate, deface, defile or defy, trample upon or cast contempt, either by words or acts, upon any such flag, standard, color or ensign, he shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction, shall be fined not less than five nor more than one hundred dollars, and may, at the discretion of the court or justice trying the case, be confined in jail for a period not exceeding thirty days. Any justice of the peace of the county wherein the offense was committed shall have concurrent jurisdiction of such offense with the circuit or other courts of such county. The words "flag, standard, color or ensign of the United States," as used in this section, shall be construed to include any flag, standard, color, ensign, or any representation or picture of a flag, standard, color or ensign, made of or upon any substance whatever, and of any size whatever, showing the national colors, the stars and stripes. This section shall not apply to any act permitted by the statutes of the United States, or of this state, or by the regulations of the United States army and navy, or of the national guard of this state, or of the members of the department of public safety; nor shall this section be construed to apply to the regular issue of a newspaper or other periodical, or to any book, certificate, diploma, warrant or commission, on which shall be printed said flag, disconnected from any advertisement, or to the vignette of any political ballot.

WVC 61-1-9 §61-1-9. Impersonation of law-enforcement officer or official; penalty.
Any person who shall falsely represent himself or herself to be a law-enforcement officer or law-enforcement official or to be under the order or direction of any such person, or any person not a law-enforcement officer or law-enforcement official who shall wear the uniform prescribed for such persons, or the badge or other insignia adopted for use by such persons with the intent to deceive another person, is guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than one thousand dollars.

For purposes of this section, the terms law-enforcement officer and law-enforcement official shall be defined by section one, article twenty-nine, chapter thirty of this code, except that such terms shall not include members of the division of public safety and shall not include individuals hired by nonpublic entities for the provision of security services.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2016 Regular Session
The West Virginia Code Online is an unofficial copy of the annotated WV Code, provided as a convenience. It has NOT been edited for publication, and is not in any way official or authoritative.

Recent legislation affecting the Code

Citation Year/Session Short Title
§61 - 3 B- 1 - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

SB43 SUB1 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/11/2016)
Clarifying means of posting to prohibit hunting or trespassing
§61 - 3 B- 3 - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

SB323 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/10/2016)
Correcting statute subsection designations regarding trespassing on property
§61 - 8 D- 10 - (New Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

SB326 SUB1 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/11/2016)
Repeal and recodify law relating to contributing to delinquency of minor child
§61 - 7 A- 1 - (Amended Code)
§61 - 7 A- 2 - (Amended Code)
§61 - 7 A- 3 - (Amended Code)
§61 - 7 A- 4 - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

SB338 SUB1 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/11/2016)
Compiling and maintaining Central State Mental Health Registry
§61 - 2 - 10 A - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

SB361 SUB1 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/18/2016)
Prohibiting persons who have committed crimes against elderly from performing community service involving elderly
§61 - 3 - 29 - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

SB567 SUB1 enr  (Uploaded - 03/18/2016)
Providing protection against property crimes committed against coal mines, railroads, utilities and other industrial facilities
§61 - 2 - 10 B - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

SB578 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/18/2016)
Protecting utility workers from crimes against person
§61 - 8 - 30 - (New Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2122 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/07/2016)
Making it illegal for first responders to photograph a corpse; Jonathan's Law
§61 - 8 - 31 - (New Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2205 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/23/2016)
Creating the crime of prohibited sexual contact by a psychotherapist
§61 - 3 C- 14 B - (Amended Code)
§61 - 8 A- 4 - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2366 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/17/2016)
Relating generally to the solicitation of minors
§61 - 11 - 22 A - (New Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

hb2494 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/15/2016)
Creating a provisional plea process in criminal cases
§61 - 3 E- 1 - (Amended Code)
§61 - 3 E- 11 - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2852 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/09/2016)
Relating to legalizing and regulating the sale and use of fireworks
§61 - 6 - 23 - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

HB4174 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/18/2016)
Exempting activity at indoor shooting ranges from the prohibition of shooting or discharging a firearm within five hundred feet of any church or dwelling house
§61 - 8 - 19 A - (Amended Code)
§61 - 8 - 19 B - (Amended Code)
§61 - 8 - 19 C - (New Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

HB4201 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/16/2016)
Increasing the criminal penalties for participating in an animal fighting venture
§61 - 2 - 29 B - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

hb4309 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/23/2016)
Increasing criminal penalties for conviction of certain offenses of financial exploitation of an elderly person
§61 - 10 - 33 - (New Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

HB4314 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/15/2016)
Prohibiting the sale of powdered or crystalline alcohol
§61 - 2 - 9 D - (New Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

hb4362 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/05/2016)
Establishing a felony offense of strangulation
§61 - 3 C- 14 A - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

HB4448 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/16/2016)
Clarifying that communication by a lender or debt collector which is allowed under the West Virginia Consumer Credit and Protection Act, likewise does not violate the provisions of the West Virginia Computer Crime and Abuse Act
§61 - 11 A- 8 - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

hb4558 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/23/2016)
Relating to victim notification and designation of additional individuals to receive notice of an offender's release
§61 - 5 - 27 - (Amended Code)
PASSED - Regular Session

hb4724 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/18/2016)
Relating to adding a requirement for the likelihood of imminent lawless action to the prerequisites for the crime of intimidation and retaliation
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