State Senator Hugh T. Farley (R, C, I – Schenectady) reported that he and his colleagues in the New York State Senate recently gave final legislative passage to “Vince’s Law,” a bill that would significantly toughen criminal penalties to get persistent drunk drivers off the road.
Bill S7108 would extend the period of time in which multiple Driving While Intoxicated convictions can occur in order to be considered a felony. Under the bill, an individual convicted of three or more DWIs within 15 preceding years would be charged with a Class D felony, punishable by up to 15 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
The bill is named for Vincent Russo, an 82-year-old Onondaga County man, who was killed in 2011 by a drunk driver while Russo was on his way to Sunday morning mass. The intoxicated driver, Michael Iannettoni, had five prior DWI-related convictions, including four in the previous 17 years before the crash that killed Mr. Russo.
The bill previously passed in the State Assembly. It will be sent to Governor Cuomo for his consideration.