Bill To Stiffen Penalties For Street Racing
A bill to stiffen penalties for street racing is making its way through the state legislature. The passage of the measure by the Assembly comes shortly after a teen was killed in a street racing accident in Elk Grove.
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
Currently if a driver is engaged in street racing and causes injury to another, he or she can only be charged with a misdemeanor.
But Republican Assemblyman John Benoit of Palm Desert says that’s wrong:
If you’re involved in a street race and something goes horribly wrong and you seriously maim or injure someone, the current maximum penalty for that offense is a misdemeanor – that doesn’t fit the crime, it’s an intentional act.
Benoit’s bill would allow the driver to be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony. He thinks this will be a deterrent to young drivers. In the Elk Grove case, since someone was killed, the district attorney can file manslaughter charges. The teen killed in that case was an innocent bystander. He was in a car that was hit by a street racer.
Benoit’s bill is now being heard by Senate committees.