2013 Mississippi Code
Title 43 - PUBLIC WELFARE
Chapter 47 - MISSISSIPPI VULNERABLE PERSONS ACT
§ 43-47-19 - Prohibition against abuse, neglect, or exploitation; penalties; relation to other laws
(1) It shall be unlawful for any person to abuse, neglect or exploit any vulnerable person.
(2) (a) Any person who willfully commits an act or willfully omits the performance of any duty, which act or omission contributes to, tends to contribute to, or results in neglect, physical pain, injury, mental anguish, unreasonable confinement or deprivation of services which are necessary to maintain the mental or physical health of a vulnerable person, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine not to exceed One Thousand Dollars ($ 1,000.00) or by imprisonment not to exceed one (1) year in the county jail, or by both such fine and imprisonment. Any accepted medical procedure performed in the usual scope of practice shall not be a violation of this subsection.
(b) Any person who willfully exploits a vulnerable person, where the value of the exploitation is less than Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($ 250.00), shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine not to exceed Five Thousand Dollars ($ 5,000.00) or by imprisonment not to exceed one (1) year in the county jail, or by both such fine and imprisonment; where the value of the exploitation is Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($ 250.00) or more, the person who exploits a vulnerable person shall be guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by imprisonment in the custody of the Department of Corrections for not more than ten (10) years.
(3) Any person who willfully inflicts physical pain or injury upon a vulnerable person shall be guilty of felonious abuse or battery, or both, of a vulnerable person and, upon conviction thereof, may be punished by imprisonment in the State Penitentiary for not more than twenty (20) years.
(4) For any third or subsequent misdemeanor conviction of any person violating any part of this section, the offenses being committed within a period of five (5) years, such person shall be guilty of a felony and shall be sentenced to not less than one (1) year nor more than five (5) years in the custody of the Department of Corrections and shall be fined not less than Two Thousand Dollars ($ 2,000.00) nor more than Five Thousand Dollars ($ 5,000.00).
(5) Nothing contained in this section shall prevent proceedings against a person under any statute of this state or municipal ordinance defining any act as a crime or misdemeanor.
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