2012 Hawaii Revised Statutes
TITLE 37. HAWAII PENAL CODE
707. Offenses Against the Person
707-714 Reckless endangering in the second degree.
§707-714 Reckless endangering in the second degree. (1) A person commits the offense of reckless endangering in the second degree if the person:
(a) Engages in conduct that recklessly places another person in danger of death or serious bodily injury; or
(b) Intentionally discharges a firearm in a populated area, in a residential area, or within the boundaries or in the direction of any road, street, or highway; provided that the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to any person who discharges a firearm upon a target range for the purpose of the target shooting done in compliance with all laws and regulations applicable thereto.
(2) Reckless endangering in the second degree is a misdemeanor. [L 1972, c 9, pt of §1; am L 1990, c 62, §1; gen ch 1992; am L 2006, c 230, §30]
Definition of recklessly, see §702-206.
Definition of "widely dangerous means", see §708-800.
COMMENTARY ON §§707-713 AND 714
The Code follows the lead of the Model Penal Code in providing two general sections for conduct which recklessly endangers human life. Previous Hawaii law covered, as does the law of most jurisdictions, such cases of reckless endangering on an ad hoc basis. A quick perusal of such statutes reveals that they all have in common the reckless endangering of human life. The Code obviates the need for special legislation on each dangerous instrument or act. Rather, all conduct so endangering human life or limb is made a misdemeanor.
The aggravated offense of reckless endangering in the first degree, §707-713, is reserved for cases where the actor employs "widely dangerous means." Widely dangerous means, as defined in §708-800, are those means which are known to be capable of causing widespread damage or destruction to both life and property. It is thought that where the potential for destruction is this great, the actor's dangerousness to society is increased so substantially, over the case where only a single or a few people are threatened, that the felony sanction is justified.
SUPPLEMENTAL COMMENTARY ON §§707-713 AND 714
Act 215, Session Laws 1978, added to §707-713(1) the words "or intentionally fires a firearm in a manner which places another person in danger of death or serious bodily injury." The legislature felt that the grave dangers posed by the use of a firearm justified a felony sanction. Senate Standing Committee Report No. 675-78, House Standing Committee Report No. 116.
Act 285, Session Laws 1988, amended §707-713 for the purpose of limiting the offense, in regard to firearms, to a person who intentionally fires a firearm in a manner which recklessly places another person in danger of death or serious bodily injury. House Standing Committee Report No. 1604-88, Senate Standing Committee Report No. 2141.
Act 62, Session Laws 1990, amended §707-714 to subject to misdemeanor liability, a person who creates an obvious risk to the public by intentionally discharging a firearm in areas likely to be traveled or inhabited. Senate Standing Committee Report No. 3060.
Act 230, Session Laws 2006, amended §707-714 by making technical, nonsubstantive amendments.
Statute essentially the equivalent of federal statute on "assault with dangerous weapon with intent to do bodily harm" set out in 18 U.S.C. §113(c). 376 F. Supp. 1024.
This offense is a lesser included offense of attempted murder under §701-109(4). 62 H. 637, 618 P.2d 306.
Based on testimony of a vendor and dirt biker, there was substantial evidence upon which a jury could have found that defendant discharged a firearm in a populated area, supporting defendant's conviction under this section. 106 H. 62 (App.), 101 P.3d 671.
Cited: 55 H. 531, 534, 523 P.2d 299.
§§707-713 And 714 Commentary:
1. M.P.C. §220.2(2) and 211.2.
2. Cf. M.P.C., Tentative Draft No. 9, comments at 86 (1959).
3. E.g., H.R.S. §§727-1 (spreading of dangerous disease, storing of explosives in populated areas, blasting with excessive charge, releasing dangerous animals), 753-13 (scattering poisonous substances).
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