2006 Ohio Revised Code - 2909.04. Disrupting public services.

§ 2909.04. Disrupting public services.

(A)  No person, purposely by any means or knowingly by damaging or tampering with any property, shall do any of the following: 

(1) Interrupt or impair television, radio, telephone, telegraph, or other mass communications service; police, fire, or other public service communications; radar, loran, radio, or other electronic aids to air or marine navigation or communications; or amateur or citizens band radio communications being used for public service or emergency communications; 

(2) Interrupt or impair public transportation, including without limitation school bus transportation, or water supply, gas, power, or other utility service to the public; 

(3) Substantially impair the ability of law enforcement officers, firefighters, rescue personnel, emergency medical services personnel, or emergency facility personnel to respond to an emergency or to protect and preserve any person or property from serious physical harm. 

(B)  No person shall knowingly use any computer, computer system, computer network, telecommunications device, or other electronic device or system or the internet so as to disrupt, interrupt, or impair the functions of any police, fire, educational, commercial, or governmental operations. 

(C)  Whoever violates this section is guilty of disrupting public services, a felony of the fourth degree. 

(D)  As used in this section: 

(1) "Emergency medical services personnel" has the same meaning as in section 2133.21 of the Revised Code. 

(2) "Emergency facility personnel" means any of the following: 

(a) Any of the following individuals who perform services in the ordinary course of their professions in an emergency facility: 

(i) Physicians authorized under Chapter 4731. of the Revised Code to practice medicine and surgery or osteopathic medicine and surgery; 

(ii) Registered nurses and licensed practical nurses licensed under Chapter 4723. of the Revised Code; 

(iii) Physician assistants authorized to practice under Chapter 4730. of the Revised Code; 

(iv) Health care workers; 

(v) Clerical staffs. 

(b) Any individual who is a security officer performing security services in an emergency facility; 

(c) Any individual who is present in an emergency facility, who was summoned to the facility by an individual identified in division (D)(2)(a) or (b) of this section. 

(3) "Emergency facility" means a hospital emergency department or any other facility that provides emergency medical services. 

(4) "Hospital" has the same meaning as in section 3727.01 of the Revised Code. 

(5) "Health care worker" means an individual, other than an individual specified in division (D)(2)(a), (b), or (c) of this section, who provides medical or other health-related care or treatment in an emergency facility, including medical technicians, medical assistants, orderlies, aides, or individuals acting in similar capacities. 

HISTORY: 134 v H 511 (Eff 1-1-74); 146 v S 2 (Eff 7-1-96); 148 v H 137 (Eff 3-10-2000); 149 v S 40. Eff 1-25-2002; 150 v S 146, § 1, eff. 9-23-04.

Not analogous to former RC § 2909.04 (GC § 12479; 99 v 526; Bureau of Code Revision, 10-1-53), repealed 134 v H 511, § 2, eff 1-1-74.


Effect of Amendments

150 v S 146, effective September 23, 2004, inserted (B) and redesignated the remaining subsections accordingly; and corrected internal references. 


19xx Committee Report or Comment.

1974 Committee Comment to H 511

This section covers any substantial interference with utility or emergency services, including mass communications, public service communications, navigational aids, transportation, water supply, gas, power, and other utility services. 

The section also includes serious interference with police, firemen, or rescue personnel in answering an emergency call or protecting life, limb, or property. Examples of violations include cutting fire hoses, pouring water into fire hydrants in freezing weather, deflating the tires of emergency vehicles, or forming a human cordon around a fire for the purpose of keeping firemen from putting it out. The section is not intended to include simple misconduct at an emergency, covered under new section 2917.13 of the Revised Code. To be a violation of this section, the interference must either be purposeful, regardless of the means employed, or must involve knowingly damaging or tampering with property. 

Disrupting public services is a felony of the third degree. 

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