Raia Co-Sponsors Bill To Curb Drunken Driving

Bill, named for 11-year-old killed by boozy adult, would make felons out of DWI-accused with children on board
November 18, 2009

Assemblyman Andrew Raia (R,I,C-East Northport) today applauded the passage of Leandra’s Law, a measure the lawmaker served as prime co-sponsor on which would make it a felony to transport a child in a car if the driver has a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 or above. In addition, the legislation, the most comprehensive and protective of its kind in the country, would mandate that every person convicted of a DWI-related crime would have an ignition-interlock system installed in his vehicle as a condition of sentencing. Interlock devices such as a dashboard breathalyzer prevent intoxicated drivers from starting their vehicles; any attempts to tamper with or bypass the device would also be treated as a crime. Leandra’s Law is named for 11-year-old Leandra Rosado, who was killed in October when the drunk driver of the car in which she was a passenger lost control and struck a tree.

“New Yorkers have sent a strong, unified message today to anyone who would risk the life of a child by driving drunk: You will pay the price,” said Raia. “Leandra Rosado was robbed of her life by an avoidable tragedy. This legislation will stiffen penalties for offenders and mandate preventative devices for the convicted. Our sympathies and prayers go out to the Rosado family for the heart-rending loss of their daughter. It is her memory that inspires this legislation; it is our duty to prevent future tragedies like Leandra’s from occurring again.”

Leandra’s Law calls for felony charges against drivers with a passenger 15 years old or younger while intoxicated with a blood-alcohol content of 0.08 or higher.