Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 19.2. Criminal Procedure
Chapter 7. Arrest
8/25/2019

§ 19.2-74. Issuance and service of summons in place of warrant in misdemeanor case; issuance of summons by special conservators of the peace.

A. 1. Whenever any person is detained by or is in the custody of an arresting officer for any violation committed in such officer's presence which offense is a violation of any county, city or town ordinance or of any provision of this Code punishable as a Class 1 or Class 2 misdemeanor or any other misdemeanor for which he may receive a jail sentence, except as otherwise provided in Title 46.2, or for offenses listed in subsection D of § 19.2-81, or an arrest on a warrant charging an offense for which a summons may be issued, and when specifically authorized by the judicial officer issuing the warrant, the arresting officer shall take the name and address of such person and issue a summons or otherwise notify him in writing to appear at a time and place to be specified in such summons or notice. Upon the giving by such person of his written promise to appear at such time and place, the officer shall forthwith release him from custody. However, if any such person shall fail or refuse to discontinue the unlawful act, the officer may proceed according to the provisions of § 19.2-82.

Anything in this section to the contrary notwithstanding, if any person is believed by the arresting officer to be likely to disregard a summons issued under the provisions of this subsection, or if any person is reasonably believed by the arresting officer to be likely to cause harm to himself or to any other person, a magistrate or other issuing authority having jurisdiction shall proceed according to the provisions of § 19.2-82.

2. Whenever any person is detained by or is in the custody of an arresting officer for a violation of any county, city, or town ordinance or of any provision of this Code, punishable as a Class 3 or Class 4 misdemeanor or any other misdemeanor for which he cannot receive a jail sentence, except as otherwise provided in Title 46.2, or to the offense of public drunkenness as defined in § 18.2-388, the arresting officer shall take the name and address of such person and issue a summons or otherwise notify him in writing to appear at a time and place to be specified in such summons or notice. Upon the giving of such person of his written promise to appear at such time and place, the officer shall forthwith release him from custody. However, if any such person shall fail or refuse to discontinue the unlawful act, the officer may proceed according to the provisions of § 19.2-82.

3. Unless otherwise authorized by law, any person so summoned shall not be held in custody after the issuance of such summons for the purpose of complying with the requirements of Chapter 23 (§ 19.2-387 et seq.). Reports to the Central Criminal Records Exchange concerning such persons shall be made pursuant to subdivision A 2 of § 19.2-390 and subsection C of § 19.2-390.

Any person refusing to give such written promise to appear under the provisions of this section shall be taken immediately by the arresting or other police officer before a magistrate or other issuing authority having jurisdiction, who shall proceed according to provisions of § 19.2-82.

Any person who willfully violates his written promise to appear, given in accordance with this section, shall be treated in accordance with the provisions of § 19.2-128, regardless of the disposition of, and in addition to, the charge upon which he was originally arrested.

Any person charged with committing any violation of § 18.2-407 may be arrested and immediately brought before a magistrate who shall proceed as provided in § 19.2-82.

B. Conservators of the peace appointed under Chapter 2 (§ 19.2-12 et seq.) may issue summonses pursuant to this section, if such officers are in uniform or displaying a badge of office. On application, the chief law-enforcement officer of the county or city shall supply each officer with a supply of summons forms, for which such officer shall account pursuant to regulation of such chief law-enforcement officer.

C. The summons used by a law-enforcement officer pursuant to this section shall be in form the same as the uniform summons for motor vehicle law violations as prescribed pursuant to § 46.2-388.

Code 1950, § 19.1-92.1; 1973, c. 98; 1974, c. 481; 1975, c. 495; 1976, c. 753; 1978, c. 500; 1979, cc. 679, 680; 1980, c. 492; 1981, c. 382; 1982, cc. 485, 500; 1984, c. 24; 1988, c. 455; 1995, c. 471; 2010, c. 840; 2014, c. 543; 2019, cc. 782, 783.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.