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Enrolled Version - Final Version House Bill 2419 History

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Key: Green = existing Code. Red = new code to be enacted

WEST virginia legislature

2020 regular session

ENROLLED

Committee Substitute for

House Bill 2419

By Delegates Shott, Householder and Porterfield

[Passed March 7, 2020; in effect ninety days from passage.]


 

AN ACT to amend and reenact §62-1C-1a of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to bail generally; authorizing the release of a person charged with a misdemeanor criminal violation when first appearing before a judicial officer; establishing that a judicial officer shall release a person charged with a misdemeanor offense on his or her own recognizance unless charged with certain offenses; establishes that in certain instances and with certain conditions the arrested person is entitled to the least restrictive bail conditions determined to be reasonably necessary to assure appearance as well as ensure safety of persons in the community and maintenance of evidence; establishing that in certain circumstances the arrested person is entitled to bail under least restrictive further conditions; identifying least restrictive further conditions; establishing considerations to determine whether to release an individual without bail, the reasonable amount of bail, or imposition of other conditions of release; establishing that in all misdemeanor cases, cash bail cannot exceed the maximum fine for the offense; requiring review of bail of an incarcerated person unable to meet the requirements of a secured bond; requiring the presence of a prosecuting attorney and, if not waived, defense counsel at hearings, other than the hearing at which conditions of release are initially set, where bail is at issue; prohibiting judicial officer recommending the services of a surety who is a relative; and, further providing that a judicial officer may modify the conditions of release at any time.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:


ARTICLE 1C. BAIL.

§62-1C-1a. Pretrial release; types of release; conditions for release; considerations as to conditions of release.

 (a) Subject to the provisions of §62-1C-1 of this code, when a person charged with a violation or violations of the criminal laws of this state first appears before a judicial officer:

(1) Except for good cause shown, a judicial officer shall release a person charged with a misdemeanor offense on his or her own recognizance unless that person is charged with:

(A) A misdemeanor offense of actual violence or threat of violence against a person;

(B) A misdemeanor offense where the victim was a minor, as defined in §61-8C-1 of this code;

(C) A misdemeanor offense involving the use of a deadly weapon, as defined in §61-7-2 of this code;

(D) A misdemeanor offense of the Uniform Controlled Substances Act as set forth in chapter 60A of this code;

(E) Misdemeanor offenses of sexual abuse;

(F) A serious misdemeanor traffic offense set forth in §17C-5-1 or §17C-5-2 of this code; or

(G) A misdemeanor offense involving auto tampering, petit larceny or possession, transfer or receiving of stolen property when alleged value on the property involved exceeds $250.

(2) For the misdemeanor offenses specified in subsection (a) of this section and all other offenses which carry a penalty of incarceration, the arrested person is entitled to be admitted to bail subject to the least restrictive condition or combination of conditions that the judicial officer determines reasonably necessary to assure that person will appear as required, and which will not jeopardize the safety of the arrested person, victims, witnesses, or other persons in the community or the safety and maintenance of evidence.  Further conditions may include that the person charged shall:

 (A) Not violate any criminal law of this state, another state, or the United States;

 (B) Remain in the custody of a person designated by the judicial officer, who agrees to assume supervision and to report any violation of a release condition to the court, if the designated person is reasonably able to assure the judicial officer that the person will appear as required and will not pose a danger to himself or herself or to the safety of any other person or the community;    (C) Participate in home incarceration pursuant to §62-11B-1 et seq. of this code;

 (D) Participate in an electronic monitoring program if one is available where the person is charged or will reside.

(E) Maintain employment, or, if unemployed, actively seek employment;

(F) Avoid all contact with an alleged victim of the alleged offense and with potential witnesses and other persons as directed by the court;

(G) Refrain from the use or excessive use of alcohol, or any use of a narcotic drug or other controlled substance, as defined in §60A-1-1 et seq. of this code without a prescription from a licensed medical practitioner;

(H) Execute an agreement to forfeit, upon failing to appear as required, property of a sufficient unencumbered value, including money, as is reasonably necessary to assure the appearance of the person as required. The person charged shall provide the court with proof of ownership, the value of the property, and information regarding existing encumbrances of the property as, in the discretion of the judicial officer, is reasonable and necessary collateral to ensure the subsequent appearance of the person as required;

 (I) Post a cash bond, or execute a bail bond with solvent sureties who will execute an agreement to forfeit an amount reasonably necessary to assure appearance of the person as required.  If other than an approved surety, the surety shall provide the court with information regarding the value of its assets and liabilities and the nature and extent of encumbrances against the surety’s property. The surety shall have a net worth of sufficiently unencumbered value to pay the amount of the bail bond; or

(J) Satisfy any other condition that is reasonably necessary to assure the appearance of the person as required and to assure the safety of the arrested person, victims, witnesses, other persons in the community, or the safety and maintenance of evidence.

(3) Proper considerations in determining whether to release the arrested person on an unsecured bond, fixing a reasonable amount of bail, or imposing other reasonable conditions of release are:

(A) The ability of the arrested person to give bail;

(B) The nature, number, and gravity of the offenses;

(C) The potential penalty the arrested person faces;

(D) Whether the alleged acts were violent in nature;

(E) The arrested person’s prior record of criminal convictions and delinquency adjudications, if any;

(F) The character, health, residence, and reputation of the arrested person;

(G) The character and strength of the evidence which has been presented to the judicial officer:

(H) Whether the arrested person is currently on probation, extended supervision, or parole;

(I) Whether the arrested person is already on bail or subject to other release conditions in other pending cases;

(J) Whether the arrested person has been bound over for trial after a preliminary examination;

(K)  Whether the arrested person has in the past forfeited bail or violated a condition of release or was ever a fugitive from justice; and

(L) The policy against unnecessary incarceration of arrested persons pending trial set forth in this section.

(b)  In all misdemeanors, cash bail may not exceed three times the maximum fine provided for the offense. If the person is charged with more than one misdemeanor, cash bail may not exceed three times the highest maximum fine of the charged offenses.

(c) Notwithstanding any provisions of this article to the contrary, whenever a person not subject to the provisions of §62-1C-1 of this code remains incarcerated after his or her initial appearance, due to the inability to meet the requirements of a secured bond, the magistrate or judge who set the secured bond shall hold a hearing within 72 hours of setting the initial bail to determine if there is a condition or combination of conditions which can meet the considerations set forth in  subdivision (2), subsection (a) of this section.

(d)  A judicial officer may upon notice and hearing modify the conditions of release at any time by imposing additional or different conditions.

(e)  A prosecuting attorney and defense counsel, unless expressly waived by the defendant, shall appear at all hearings in which bail or bond conditions are at issue other than the proceeding at which the conditions of release are initially set.

(f) No judicial officer may recommend the services of a surety who is his or her relative as that term is defined in §6B-1-3 of this code.



The Joint Committee on Enrolled Bills hereby certifies that the foregoing bill is correctly enrolled.

 

 

...............................................................

        Chairman, House Committee

 

 

                     ...............................................................

                             Chairman, Senate Committee

                                                   

 

Originating in the House.

 

In effect ninety days from passage.

 

 

...............................................................

                  Clerk of the House of Delegates

 

 

                     ...............................................................

                                                   Clerk of the Senate

 

 

                                    ...............................................................

                                                   Speaker of the House of Delegates

 

 

                                                            ...............................................................

                                                                                     President of the Senate

 

 

__________

 

 

 

      The within ................................................... this the...........................................

 

day of ..........................................................................................................., 2020.

 

 

                                                .............................................................

                                                                                                Governor


 

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