What Is the Penalty for Wanton Endangerment?

The penalty for wanton endangernment differs depending on the degree, the state and if the person is a repeat offender or not. For instance, in Kentucky, it is a class D felony that attracts a prison term of up to five years.

In the case of West Virginia vs Chadwick Emmanuel Taylor, Mr. Chadwick was sentenced to a determinate term of five years in the penitentiary following his plea of guilt to one count of wanton endangerment with a firearm in violation of West Virginia Code 61-7-12. The felony violation, at the time, carried a penalty of not less than one year and not more than five years in the penitentiary or one year in prison, or the defendant could be asked to pay a fine of not less than $250 but not more than $2,500, or both a prison term and a fine.

Before sentencing, a consideration is also made of the age of the offender. The law is usually lenient on first and juvenile offenders. It is not very clear what entails wanton endangerment, but in the case of Kentucky, where legislation on the crime seems to be very vigilant, it is when a person is found to be extremely indifferent to the value of human life by engaging in conduct that creates a substantial danger of death or gross injury to another person.