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Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter
April 2, 2009
Introduced by Senators Knotts, Land, Coleman, Setzler, McConnell, Leatherman, Courson, Thomas and Rose
S. Printed 4/2/09--H.
Read the first time March 26, 2009.
TO AMEND THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BY ADDING SECTION 56-5-4975 SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT IT IS UNLAWFUL FOR CERTAIN PERSONS TO OPERATE A VEHICLE THAT IS UPFITTED AS AN AMBULANCE OR NO LONGER PERMITTED AND LICENSED AS AN AMBULANCE UNLESS CERTAIN EXTERIOR ITEMS THAT DISTINGUISH IT AS AN AMBULANCE ARE REMOVED, TO PROVIDE A PENALTY FOR A VIOLATION OF THIS PROVISION, AND TO PROVIDE THAT THE USE OF THE VEHICLE DURING THE COMMISSION OF A CRIME OR A TERRORIST ACT IS A FELONY.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Article 35, Chapter 5, Title 56 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"Section 56-5-4975. (A) It is unlawful for a person to operate a vehicle that is upfitted as an ambulance or no longer permitted and licensed as an ambulance pursuant to Article 1, Chapter 61, Title 44, unless the vehicle's exterior equipment and markings including, but not limited to, emergency lights, sirens, and decals that distinguish it as an ambulance are removed. A person who violates this subsection, except as provided in subsections (B) and (C), is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.
(B) A person who operates a vehicle in violation of subsection (A) with the intent to commit a felony, or in the commission of a felony, is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.
(C) A person who operates a vehicle in violation of subsection (A) with the intent to commit a terrorist act, or in the commission of a terrorist act, is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be fined ten thousand dollars and imprisoned for a mandatory minimum of ten years, no part of which may be suspended nor probation granted. For purposes of this section, 'terrorist act' means activities that:
(1) involve acts dangerous to human life, which are a violation of the criminal laws of this State;
(2) appear to be intended to:
(a) intimidate or coerce a civilian population;
(b) influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or
(c) affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and
(3) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of this State.
(D) The provisions of this section do not apply to:
(1) eleemosynary or not-for-profit organizations that operate an ambulance that is no longer permitted and licensed and whose exterior markings have been removed for use in parades, fundraising activities, and other official functions;
(2) a person operating a vehicle that is going from the place of purchase to his home or his fixed place of business;
(3) a person operating a vehicle going to a location for the purpose of removing the vehicle's exterior equipment or markings; or
(4) a person operating an antique vehicle as defined by Section 56-3-2210."
SECTION 2. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
This web page was last updated on April 2, 2009 at 7:16 PM