Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 9.1. Commonwealth Public Safety
Chapter 1. Department of Criminal Justice Services

Article 4.1. Special Conservators of the Peace.

§ 9.1-150.1. Definitions.

In addition to the definitions set forth in § 9.1-101, as used in this article, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Special conservator of the peace" means any individual appointed pursuant to § 19.2-13 on or after September 15, 2004.

2003, c. 922.

§ 9.1-150.2. Powers of Criminal Justice Services Board relating to special conservators of the peace appointed pursuant to § 19.2-13.

The Board shall adopt regulations establishing compulsory minimum, entry-level, in-service, and advanced training standards for special conservators of the peace. The regulations may include provisions delegating to the Board's staff the right to inspect the facilities and programs of persons conducting training to ensure compliance with the law and its regulations. In establishing compulsory training standards for special conservators of the peace, the Board shall require training to be obtained at a criminal justice training academy established pursuant to § 15.2-1747, or at a private security training school certified by the Department, and shall ensure the public safety and welfare against incompetent or unqualified persons engaging in the activities regulated by this section. The regulations may provide for exemption from training of persons having previous employment as law-enforcement officers for a state or the federal government. However, no such exemption shall be granted to persons having less than five continuous years of such employment, nor shall an exemption be provided for any person whose employment as a law-enforcement officer was terminated because of his misconduct or incompetence or who has been decertified as a law-enforcement officer. The regulations may include provisions for exemption from such training for persons having previous training that meets or exceeds the minimum training standards and has been approved by the Department. The Board may also adopt regulations that (i) establish the qualifications of applicants for registration; (ii) cause to be examined the qualifications of each applicant for registration; (iii) provide for collection of fees for registration and renewal that are sufficient to cover all expenses for administration and operation of a program of registration; (iv) ensure continued competency and prevent deceptive or misleading practices by practitioners; (v) effectively administer the regulatory system promulgated by the Board; (vi) provide for receipt of complaints concerning the conduct of any person whose activities are regulated by the Board; (vii) provide for investigations, and appropriate disciplinary action if warranted; and (viii) allow the Board to revoke, suspend or refuse to renew a registration, certification, or license for just cause as enumerated in regulations of the Board. The Board shall adopt compulsory, entry-level training standards that shall not exceed, but shall be a minimum of 98 hours for unarmed special conservators of the peace and that shall not exceed, but shall be a minimum of 130 hours for armed special conservators of the peace. In adopting its regulations, the Board shall seek the advice of the Private Security Services Advisory Board established pursuant to § 9.1-143.

2003, c. 922; 2015, cc. 766, 772.

§ 9.1-150.3. Powers of Department of Criminal Justice Services relating to special conservators of the peace appointed pursuant to § 19.2-13.

A. In addition to the powers otherwise conferred upon it by law, the Department may (i) charge each applicant for registration a nonrefundable fee as established by the Board to cover the costs of the Department for processing an application for registration, and enforcement of the regulations, and other costs associated with the maintenance of the program of regulation; (ii) charge nonrefundable fees for private security services training as established by the Board for processing school certifications and enforcement of training standards; and (iii) conduct investigations to determine the suitability of applicants for registration, including a drug and alcohol screening. For purposes of this investigation, the Department shall require the applicant to provide personal descriptive information to be forwarded, along with the applicant's fingerprints, to the Central Criminal Records Exchange for the purpose of conducting a Virginia criminal history records search. The Central Criminal Records Exchange shall forward the fingerprints and personal description to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for the purpose of obtaining a national criminal record check.

B. The Director or his designee may make an ex parte application to the circuit court for the city or county wherein evidence sought is kept or wherein a licensee does business for the issuance of a subpoena duces tecum in furtherance of the investigation of a sworn complaint within the jurisdiction of the Department or the Board to request production of any relevant records, documents and physical or other evidence of any person, partnership, association or corporation licensed or regulated by the Department pursuant to this article. The court may issue and compel compliance with such a subpoena upon a showing of reasonable cause. Upon determining that reasonable cause exists to believe that evidence may be destroyed or altered, the court may issue a subpoena duces tecum requiring the immediate production of evidence. Costs of the investigation and adjudication of violations of this article or Board regulations may be recovered. All costs recovered shall be deposited into the state treasury to the credit of the Conservators of the Peace Regulatory Fund. Such proceedings shall be brought in the name of the Commonwealth by the Department in the circuit court of the city or county in which the unlawful act occurred or in which the defendant resides. The Director, or agents appointed by him, shall have the authority to administer oaths or affirmations for the purpose of receiving complaints and conducting investigations of violations of this article, or any regulation promulgated hereunder and to serve process issued by the Department or the Board.

2003, c. 922.

§ 9.1-150.4. Unlawful conduct; penalties.

A. It shall be unlawful for any person to (i) misrepresent facts in an application for registration; (ii) willfully refuse to furnish the Department information or records required or requested pursuant to statute or regulation; or (iii) violate any statute or regulation governing the practice of special conservators of the peace regulated by this article or § 19.2-13.

B. Any person registered by the Department pursuant to § 19.2-13 who the Department or the Board determines has violated any statute or Board regulation and who is not criminally prosecuted shall be subject to a monetary penalty not to exceed $2,500 for each violation. The penalty may be sued for and recovered in the name of the Commonwealth and shall be paid into the state treasury to the credit of the Literary Fund in accordance with § 19.2-353.

C. Any person who is convicted of a willful violation of the provisions of this article or § 19.2-13 is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. Any person convicted of a third or subsequent offense under this article or § 19.2-13 during a 36-month period is guilty of a Class 6 felony.

2003, c. 922.