Kron 4 reports that a new bill in California would close a loophole to boost the maximum prison sentence for DUIs. A bill in California recently passed out of committee after it was introduced almost a year ago. The bill would close a loophole in the law that is a benefit to those that drive while under the influence.
In 2018, Rogello Alvarez hit and killed Gavin Gladding as Gladding was out jogging. At the time, Alvarez was intoxicated and was driving without a license. Gavin’s Law hopes to close a loophole in the state’s DUI law that punishes drunken drivers who remain at the scene of an accident more harshly than those who leave the scene and sober up. Gavin’s Law will close the gap between these situations by upping the maximum penalty for fatal hit and run accidents from four years to six years.
Next up for the bill is the appropriations committee before the bill lands on the assembly floor.
California already has some strict DUI laws. Even a first time DUI can land a person in prison for up to 6 months. A second DUI can mean an even longer time in jail. Jail penalties do not take into account the time spent on probation, community service, DUI schools, possible treatment programs, and license suspension. This is just if a person is caught driving while intoxicated and not if they are actually involved in an accident. Being involved in an accident while intoxicated can increase the penalties substantially. This is especially true if those injuries are serious or someone lost their lives in the crash.