Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 19.2. Criminal Procedure
Chapter 15. Trial and Its Incidents
3/9/2021

Article 2. Venue.

§ 19.2-244. Venue in general.

A. Except as otherwise provided by law, the prosecution of a criminal case shall be had in the county or city in which the offense was committed. Except as to motions for a change of venue, all other questions of venue must be raised before verdict in cases tried by a jury and before the finding of guilty in cases tried by the court without a jury.

B. If an offense has been committed within the Commonwealth and it cannot readily be determined within which county or city the offense was committed, venue for the prosecution of the offense may be had in the county or city (i) in which the defendant resides; (ii) if the defendant is not a resident of the Commonwealth, in which the defendant is apprehended; or (iii) if the defendant is not a resident of the Commonwealth and is not apprehended in the Commonwealth, in which any related offense was committed.

C. The courts of a locality shall have concurrent jurisdiction with the courts of any other locality adjoining such locality over criminal offenses committed in or upon the premises, buildings, rooms, or offices owned or occupied by such locality or any officer, agency, or department thereof that are located in the adjoining locality.

1975, c. 495; 2015, cc. 632, 637; 2018, c. 164.

§ 19.2-245. Offenses committed without and made punishable within Commonwealth; embezzlement or larceny committed within Commonwealth; where prosecuted.

Prosecution for offenses committed wholly or in part without and made punishable within this Commonwealth may be in any county or city in which the offender is found or to which he is sent by any judge or court; and if any person shall commit larceny or embezzlement beyond the jurisdiction of this Commonwealth and bring the stolen property into the same he shall be liable to prosecution and punishment for larceny or embezzlement in any county or city into which he shall have taken the property as if the same had been wholly committed therein; and if any person shall commit larceny or embezzlement within this Commonwealth and take the stolen property into any county or city other than the county or city within which the same was committed he shall be liable to prosecution and punishment for such larceny or embezzlement in any such county or city into which he shall have taken the property as if the same had been wholly committed therein; provided, that if any person shall commit embezzlement within this Commonwealth he shall be liable as aforesaid or to prosecution and punishment for his offense in the county or city in which he was legally obligated to deliver the embezzled funds or property.

Code 1950, § 19.1-220; 1960, c. 366; 1975, c. 495; 1977, c. 216.

§ 19.2-245.01. Offenses involving reports or statements concerning cigarette sales or stamping.

Any criminal violation of Chapter 42 (§ 3.2-4200 et seq.) of Title 3.2, Article 10 (§ 18.2-246.6 et seq.) of Chapter 6 of Title 18.2, or § 18.2-514 involving reports or statements concerning cigarette sales or stamping may be prosecuted in the City of Richmond.

2009, c. 847; 2013, c. 625.

§ 19.2-245.1. Forgery; where prosecuted.

If any person commits forgery, that forgery may be prosecuted in any county or city (i) where the writing was forged, or where the same was used or passed, or attempted to be used or passed, or deposited or placed with another person, firm, association, or corporation either for collection or credit for the account of any person, firm, association, or corporation; (ii) where the writing is found in the possession of the defendant; or (iii) where an issuer, acquirer, or account holder sustained a financial loss as a result of the offense.

1979, c. 30; 2000, c. 327; 2019, cc. 46, 621.

§ 19.2-245.2. Tax offenses; where prosecuted.

If an offense involving tax, as defined in Title 58.1, is committed, that offense may be prosecuted in either any county or city where a false or fraudulent tax return, document, or statement was filed, or the county or city where the offender resides. However, venue shall not be in the City of Richmond solely because a false or fraudulent tax return, document or statement was filed directly with the Department of Taxation.

1990, c. 631.

§ 19.2-246. Injury inflicted by person within Commonwealth upon one outside Commonwealth.

If a mortal wound or other violence or injury be inflicted by a person within this Commonwealth upon one outside of the same, or upon one in this Commonwealth who afterwards dies from the effect thereof out of the Commonwealth, the offender shall be amenable to prosecution and punishment for the offense in the courts of the county or city in which he was at the time of the commission thereof as if the same had been committed in such county or city.

Code 1950, § 19.1-221; 1960, c. 366; 1975, c. 495.

§ 19.2-247. Venue in certain homicide cases.

Where evidence exists that a homicide has been committed either within or without the Commonwealth, under circumstances that make it unknown where such crime was committed, the homicide and any related offenses shall be amenable to prosecution in the courts of the county or city where the body or any part thereof of the victim may be found or, if the victim was removed from the Commonwealth for medical treatment prior to death and died outside the Commonwealth, in the courts of the county or city from which the victim was removed for medical treatment prior to death, as if the offense has been committed in such county or city. In a prosecution for capital murder pursuant to subdivision A 8 of § 18.2-31, the offense may be prosecuted in any jurisdiction in the Commonwealth in which any one of the killings may be prosecuted.

Code 1950, § 19.1-221.1; 1973, c. 308; 1975, c. 495; 1996, c. 959; 2002, c. 503; 2015, cc. 632, 637.

§ 19.2-248. Venue when mortal wound, etc., inflicted in one county and death ensues in another.

If a mortal wound, or other violence or injury, be inflicted, or poison administered in one county or city, and death ensues therefrom in another county or city, the offense may be prosecuted in either.

Code 1950, § 19.1-223; 1960, c. 366; 1975, c. 495.

§ 19.2-249. Offenses committed on boundary of two counties, two cities, or county and city, etc.; where prosecuted.

An offense committed on the boundary of two counties, or on the boundary of two cities, or on the boundary of a county and city, or within 300 yards thereof, may be alleged to have been committed, and may be prosecuted and punished, in either county, in either city, or the county or city, and any sheriff, deputy sheriff, or other police officer shall have jurisdiction to make arrests and preserve the peace for a like distance on either side of the boundary line between such counties, such cities, or such county and city.

Code 1950, § 19.1-222; 1960, c. 366; 1975, c. 495; 1978, c. 354; 2003, c. 116.

§ 19.2-249.1. Offenses committed within towns situated in two or more counties; where prosecuted.

An offense or traffic infraction committed within a town situated in two or more counties within the Commonwealth may be alleged to have been committed, and may be prosecuted and punished, in any one of such counties.

1984, c. 278.

§ 19.2-249.2. Venue for prosecution of computer and other crimes.

For the purpose of venue, any violation of the Virginia Computer Crimes Act (§ 18.2-152.1 et seq.) or § 18.2-386.1 shall be considered to have been committed in any county or city:

1. In which any act was performed in furtherance of any course of conduct that violated any provision listed above;

2. In which the owner has his principal place of business in the Commonwealth;

3. In which any offender had control or possession of any proceeds of the violation or of any books, records, documents, property, financial instrument, computer software, computer program, computer data, or other material or objects that were used in furtherance of the violation;

4. From which, to which, or through which any access to a computer or computer network was made whether by wires, electromagnetic waves, microwaves, optics or any other means of communication;

5. In which the offender resides; or

6. In which any computer that is an object or an instrument of the violation is located at the time of the alleged offense.

2005, cc. 746, 761, 827; 2015, c. 423.

§ 19.2-250. How far jurisdiction of corporate authorities extends.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of this article and except as provided in subsection B hereof, the jurisdiction of the corporate authorities of each town or city, in criminal cases involving offenses against the Commonwealth, shall extend within the Commonwealth one mile beyond the corporate limits of such town or city; except that such jurisdiction of the corporate authorities of towns situated in counties having a density of population in excess of 300 inhabitants per square mile, or in counties adjacent to cities having a population of 170,000 or more, shall extend for 300 yards beyond the corporate limits of such town or, in the case of the criminal jurisdiction of an adjacent county, for 300 yards within such town.

B. Notwithstanding any other provision of this article, the jurisdiction of the authorities of Chesterfield County and Henrico County, in criminal cases involving offenses against the Commonwealth, shall extend one mile beyond the limits of such county into the City of Richmond.

Code 1950, § 15.1-141; 1962, c. 623; 1975, c. 495; 1978, c. 379; 1998, c. 428; 2007, c. 813.

§ 19.2-251. When and how venue may be changed.

A circuit court may, on motion of the accused or of the Commonwealth, for good cause, order the venue for the trial of a criminal case in such court to be changed to some other circuit court. Such motion when made by the accused may be made in his absence upon a petition signed and sworn to by him.

Whenever the mayor of any city, or the sheriff of any county, shall call on the Governor for military force to protect the accused from violence, the judge of the circuit court of the city or county having jurisdiction of the offense shall, upon a petition signed and sworn to by the accused, whether he be present or not, at once order the venue to be changed to the circuit court of a city or county sufficiently remote from the place where the offense was committed to insure the safe and impartial trial of the accused.

Code 1950, § 19.1-224; 1960, c. 366; 1975, c. 495.

§ 19.2-252. Court ordering change of venue may admit accused to bail and recognize witnesses; remand of accused not admitted to bail.

When the venue is so changed, the court making the order may admit the accused to bail and shall recognize the witnesses and the accused if admitted to bail and the bail be given, to appear on some certain day before the court to which the case is removed; if the accused be not admitted to bail or the bail required be not given, the court shall remand him to its own jail and order its officer to remove him thence to the jail of the court to which the case is removed, so that he shall be there before the day for the appearance of the witnesses.

Code 1950, § 19.1-225; 1960, c. 366; 1975, c. 495.

§ 19.2-253. Procedure upon and after change of venue.

The clerk of the court which orders a change of venue shall certify copies of the recognizances aforesaid and of the record of the case to the clerk of the court to which the case is removed, who shall thereupon issue a venire facias, directed to the officer of such court; and such court shall proceed with the case as if the prosecution had been originally therein; and for that purpose the certified copies aforesaid shall be sufficient.

Code 1950, § 19.1-226; 1960, c. 366; 1975, c. 495.