State Senator Lou Correa
Sacramento, CA – State Senator Lou Correa (D – Santa Ana), joined by state-wide law enforcement and victims’ rights groups, announced the establishment of a working group with the Chair of Senate Public Safety Committee, Senator Loni Hancock (D-Berkeley), to amend Senate Bill 289, a measure that would equip law enforcement and district attorneys to arrest and prosecute drivers under the influence of drugs.
“Driving under the influence of illegal drugs is dangerous and I am pleased that the Chair agreed to participate in a working group to develop a comprehensive solution to what is fast becoming a growing and dangerous trend on our roadways,” said Correa.
SB 289 was presented in Senate Public Safety Committee with the support of California State Sheriffs’ Association, California Narcotic Officers’ Association, and California Police Chiefs Association, as well as Bishop Ron Allen, President and CEO, International Faith Based Coalition. Compelling testimony in support for SB 289 came from Robert McGrory, Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, whose son, a CHP officer, was tragically killed by a driver who was impaired by illegal drugs.
The percentage of drivers testing positive for illegal drugs has increased dramatically over the last decade. Unlike the .08 blood alcohol content standard, there is no statutory threshold for drug impaired driving. Though state and local law enforcement agencies are making efforts to better train officers to detect drugged driving, the prosecution of drug impaired drivers is often difficult and complicated under California Law.
“I look forward to working with the Chair and stakeholders in the coming months to find parity in the law and provide a pathway to safer roads and communities, added Correa.
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