WEST virginia legislature
2019 regular session
House Bill 3134
By Delegates Shott, Hollen, Canestraro, Steele, Byrd and Harshbarger
[Originating in the Committee on Judiciary; Reported on February 19, 2019]
A BILL to amend and reenact § 17C-5-3 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to establishing criminal penalties for negligent homicide, and increasing criminal penalties for reckless driving resulting in serious bodily injury.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
ARTICLE 5. SERIOUS TRAFFIC OFFENSES.
§17C-5-1. Negligent homicide; penalties.
(a) When the death of any person ensues within one year as a proximate result of injury received by the driving of any vehicle anywhere in this state in reckless disregard of the safety of others, the person so operating such vehicle shall be guilty of negligent homicide.
(b) Any person convicted of negligent homicide is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof,
shall be imprisoned in a state correctional facility for not less than three
nor more than fifteen years and shall be fined not less than $1,000 nor more
shall be punished by
imprisonment for not more than one year or by fine of not less than $100 nor
more than $1,000, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
(c) The commissioner shall revoke the license or permit to drive and any nonresident operating privilege of any person convicted of negligent homicide.
§17C-5-3. Reckless driving; penalties.
(a) Any person who drives any vehicle upon any street or highway, or upon any residential street, or in any parking area, or upon the ways of any institution of higher education, whether public or private, or upon the ways of any state institution, or upon the property of any county boards of education, or upon any property within the state park and public recreation system established by the Director of the Division of Natural Resources pursuant to section three, article four, chapter twenty of this code in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property is guilty of reckless driving.
(b) The provisions of subsection (a) of this section shall not apply to those areas which have been temporarily closed for racing sport events or which may be set aside by the Director of the Division of Natural Resources within the state park and recreation system for exclusive use by motorcycles or other recreational vehicles.
(c) Every person convicted of reckless driving is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon a first conviction thereof, shall be confined in jail for a period of not less than five days nor more than ninety days, or fined not less than $25 nor more than $500, or both, and upon conviction of a second or subsequent conviction thereof, shall be confined in jail not less than ten days nor more than six months, or fined not less than $50 nor more than $1,000, or both.
(e) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (c)
of this section, any person convicted of a violation of subsection (a) of this
section who in doing so proximately causes another to suffer serious bodily
injury shall, upon conviction, be imprisoned in a state correctional
confined in jail not less
than ten days two nor more than six months or ten years
and fined not less than $50 $1000 nor more than $1,000,$3000.
(f) For purposes of subsection (d) of this section, "serious bodily injury" means bodily injury which creates a substantial risk of death, which causes serious or prolonged disfigurement, prolonged impairment of health or prolonged loss or impairment of the function of any bodily organ.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to increase the penalties associated with reckless driving resulting in death or serious bodily injury.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from a heading or the present law and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.