Lavine: New Law Closes Loophole in DUI Cases

July 22, 2010

Assemblyman Charles Lavine welcomes Nassau County ADA Maureen McCormick to Albany on the occasion of Assembly passage of what would ultimately become Jack Shea’s Law.

Assemblyman Charles D. Lavine has announced the signing into law of a bill he supported that would allow advanced emergency medical technicians and other medical personnel to draw blood from drivers without the presence of a doctor when the driver is suspected of driving under the influence and is involved in a fatal accident.

Assemblyman Lavine said, “The passage of this new law will allow for a more expedient collection of blood samples, ending what has been an egregious flaw in the current system. Until now, without a doctor on the scene, blood evidence taken from a driver suspected of drinking would often be inadmissible in court, sometimes leading to acquittal of all charges against the driver.” That was the case in the death of Jack Shea, a former Olympic skater who was killed in a car crash in 2002 at 91 years of age. The new law is known as Jack Shea’s Law.

Nassau County Assistant District Attorney Maureen McCormick, a staunch advocate of Jack Shea’s Law, as well as other anti-drunk driving legislation, was in Albany to celebrate the Assembly passage of Jack Shea’s Law. While the law was long overdue, Ms. McCormick said she was pleased with the remediation of what she called the “poorly written legislation” that preceded the new law.

Assemblyman Lavine concluded, “I am pleased that New York State has passed Jack Shea’s Law that will serve to make our judicial system more efficient and defined when dealing with DUIs. I applaud ADA McCormick for her longstanding and unwavering support of, and dedication to, these vital objectives.”