A. The Attorney General or Chief Deputy Attorney General, if the Attorney General so designates in writing, in any case where the Attorney General is authorized by law to prosecute or pursuant to a request in his official capacity of an attorney for the Commonwealth in any city or county, may apply to a judge of competent jurisdiction for an order authorizing the interception of wire, electronic or oral communications by the Department of State Police, when such interception may reasonably be expected to provide evidence of the commission of a felonious offense of extortion, bribery, kidnapping, murder, any felony violation of § 18.2-248 or 18.2-248.1, any felony violation of Chapter 29 (§ 59.1-364 et seq.) of Title 59.1, any felony violation of Article 2 (§ 18.2-38 et seq.), Article 2.1 (§ 18.2-46.1 et seq.), Article 2.2 (§ 18.2-46.4 et seq.), Article 5 (§ 18.2-58 et seq.), Article 6 (§ 18.2-59 et seq.) or any felonies that are not Class 6 felonies in Article 7 (§ 18.2-61 et seq.) of Chapter 4 of Title 18.2, or any conspiracy to commit any of the foregoing offenses. The Attorney General or Chief Deputy Attorney General may apply for authorization for the observation or monitoring of the interception by a police department of a county or city, by a sheriff’s office, or by law-enforcement officers of the United States. Such application shall be made, and such order may be granted, in conformity with the provisions of § 19.2-68.
Terms Used In Virginia Code 19.2-66
- City: means an independent incorporated community which became a city as provided by law before noon on July 1, 1971, or which has within defined boundaries a population of 5,000 or more and which has become a city as provided by law. See Virginia Code 1-208
- Court: means any court vested with appropriate jurisdiction under the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth. See Virginia Code 19.2-5
- Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
- Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
- in writing: include any representation of words, letters, symbols, numbers, or figures, whether (i) printed or inscribed on a tangible medium or (ii) stored in an electronic or other medium and retrievable in a perceivable form and whether an electronic signature authorized by Chapter 42. See Virginia Code 1-257
- Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
- Person: means any employee or agent of the Commonwealth or a political subdivision thereof, and any individual, partnership, association, joint stock company, trust or corporation;
"Readily accessible to the general public" means, with respect to a radio communication, that such communication is not (i) scrambled or encrypted; (ii) transmitted using modulation techniques whose essential parameters have been withheld from the public with the intention of preserving the privacy of such communication; (iii) carried on a subcarrier or other signal subsidiary to a radio transmission; (iv) transmitted over a communication system provided by a communications common carrier, unless the communication is a tone-only paging system communication; or (v) transmitted on frequencies allocated under Part 25, subpart D, E, or F of Part 74, or Part 94 of the Rules of the Federal Communications Commission, unless, in the case of a communication transmitted on a frequency allocated under Part 74 that is not exclusively allocated to broadcast auxiliary services, the communication is a two-way voice communication by radio;
"Remote computing service" means the provision to the public of computer storage or processing services by means of an electronic communications system;
"Trap and trace device" means a device or process that captures the incoming electronic or other impulses that identify the originating number or other dialing, routing, addressing and signaling information reasonably likely to identify the source of a wire or electronic communication; however, such information shall not include the contents of any communication;
"User" means any person or entity who uses an electronic communication service and is duly authorized by the provider of such service to engage in such use;
"Wire communication" means any aural transfer made in whole or in part through the use of facilities for the transmission of communications by the aid of wire, cable, or other like connection, including the use of such connection in a switching station, furnished or operated by any person engaged in providing or operating such facilities for the transmission of communications. See Virginia Code 19.2-61
- Probable cause: A reasonable ground for belief that the offender violated a specific law.
- Prosecute: To charge someone with a crime. A prosecutor tries a criminal case on behalf of the government.
- State: when applied to a part of the United States, includes any of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the United States Virgin Islands. See Virginia Code 1-245
- United States: includes the 50 states, the District of Columbia the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands and the United States Virgin Islands. See Virginia Code 1-255
B. The application for an order under subsection B of § 19.2-68 shall be made as follows:
1. In the case of an application for a wire or electronic interception, a judge of competent jurisdiction shall have the authority to issue an order under subsection B of § 19.2-68 if there is probable cause to believe that an offense was committed, is being committed, or will be committed or the person or persons whose communications are to be intercepted live, work, subscribe to a wire or electronic communication system, maintain an address or a post office box, or are making the communication within the territorial jurisdiction of the court.
2. In the case of an application for an oral intercept, a judge of competent jurisdiction shall have the authority to issue an order under subsection B of § 19.2-68 if there is probable cause to believe that an offense was committed, is being committed, or will be committed or the physical location of the oral communication to be intercepted is within the territorial jurisdiction of the court.
C. For the purposes of an order entered pursuant to subsection B of § 19.2-68 for the interception of a wire or electronic communication, such communication shall be deemed to be intercepted in the jurisdiction where the order is entered, regardless of the physical location or the method by which the communication is captured or routed to the monitoring location.
Code 1950, § 19.1-89.6; 1973, c. 442; 1975, c. 495; 1976, c. 271; 1979, c. 602; 1982, cc. 40, 274; 1988, cc. 855, 889; 2002, cc. 588, 623; 2004, c. 122; 2005, c. 934; 2011, cc. 403, 414; 2013, cc. 448, 664.