NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A6039
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the penal law, in relation to enacting
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: Establishes the crime of homicide by
sale of an opiate controlled substance
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1: This act shall be known and cited as "Laree's Law".
Section 2: Adds subdivision 21 to Section 220.00 of the penal law.
Section 3: Adds section 125.24 to the penal law. Section 4: Establishes
the effective date.
JUSTIFICATION: Heroin use is steadily on the rise. Its impact now
reaches every aspect of our society regardless of income, education or
genders. The increasing availability of this drug combined with more
powerful incarnations is creating an epidemic that is having a dramatic
impact across the state and leading to the unfortunate death of too many
New Yorkers. Currently, a person who provides an illicit drug that
results in the death of a user can typically only be charged with crimi-
nal sale of a controlled substance, allowing those involved in the
illicit drug trade to escape prosecution for the deaths caused by their
This law would hold drug dealers accountable for the true cost of their
activities, significantly diminish the open availability of these
dangerous drugs on our streets and give district attorneys the necessary
tools to work up the criminal chain to the ultimate supplier because
facing life imprisonment for any amount of drugs that results in death
is a profound disincentive to sell drugs within the state of New York.
This law seeks to punish those individuals involved in the illegal drug
trade and is not intended to punish those individuals who are merely
co-users. Therefore a co-user who shares the drugs with the victim still
has an incentive to follow the current good Samaritan law and save the
other person as he or she will be able to avoid prosecution for homicide
by sale of an opiate controlled substance and instead admit to a lower
felony because it still is a distribution.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: None
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after
it shall have become law.