Thomas D. Croci

March 02, 2016

Measures Would Increase Penalties for Drug Sales to Anyone Under 14 and Sales That Take Place at Parks or Playgrounds

Hauppauge, NY – Senator Thomas Croci (R, C, I – Sayville) announced today that the New York State Senate has passed two bills to help keep illegal drugs out of the hands of children and teens. The bills would help tackle the rise in drug abuse among youth by increasing penalties for the sale of drugs to anyone under 14 years of age and for the sale of illegal drugs in parks or at playgrounds.

There has been a recent increase in drug use - especially opiate-based substances - by young adults and teenagers, and with it, an increase in overdoses. Many of these youngsters start experimenting in their teenage years with addicting prescription drugs provided by drug dealers who prey upon young people.

A bill (S208) sponsored by Senator Jack M. Martins (R-C-I, Mineola) creates the crime of criminal sale of a controlled substance to a child in the first degree, making the sale of a controlled substance by an adult to a minor under the age of 14 a Class A-II felony.

A bill (S994) sponsored by Senator Martin J. Golden (R-C-I, Brooklyn) would increase the penalties for the sale of controlled substances if it occurs on park grounds or playgrounds. Current laws penalize persons who sell controlled  substances  on  the grounds  of  day care centers and educational facilities, but not park grounds or playgrounds.

Senator Croci stated, “Parks and playgrounds should be about childhood recreation – not recreational drug use. This legislation will protect our children from drug dealers in a place that should be a sanctuary for their safety and joy. We are also in the midst of combating a heroin epidemic in our state and our efforts to win that battle should be combined with the Assembly and with the Governor by passing these important pieces of legislation on behalf of every family in New York.”

The bills will be sent to the Assembly.

All media inquiries should be directed to Senator Croci’s Communications Specialist, Christine Geed at (631) 398-8044 (call or text) or via email at Inquiries for additional information should be directed to Senator Croci’s Press Secretary, Jennifer Romero at (631) 513-5657 or via email at