Kevin’s Law goes into effect in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania DUI Attorney
This past summer, lawmakers in the state of Pennsylvania passed what is known as “Kevin’s Law.” Kevin’s Law is a law that has significantly increased mandatory sentencing for people who have committed a fatal hit-and-run accident. The law is named after a boy named Kevin Miller; a five-year-old who was killed after he was struck by a hit-and-run driver. The law was set up to fix a loophole in sentencing that had been exposed. Before Kevin’s Law was enacted, if a driver was found guilty of a fatal hit-and-run accident, he or she would have to face a minimum of one year in jail. A person who was convicted of vehicular homicide while under the influence of drugs or alcohol would have to face a minimum of three years in jail. Those who wished to see the law enacted argued that such a short minimum sentence would actually encourage drunk drivers to flee the scene, saying that gathering evidence for a DUI is significantly more difficult after time has passed. The new law increases the mandatory minimum sentence for fatal hit-and-run to three years in jail, equaling it to vehicular homicide while under the influence. By way of Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Law, Section 3742, a driver who hits another vehicle or pedestrian is required by law to stop at the scene of the accident and remain on the scene until law enforcement officials arrive if there is an injury or death. Failing to stay at the scene used to be considered a hit-and-run, with a mandatory minimum sentence of one year in jail in the event that someone dies. Kevin’s Law will raise that minimum sentence to three years in an effort to discourage drunk drivers was leaving the scene.
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If you have questions about drunk driving or you have been arrested for hit-and-run, call Pittsburgh DUI attorney Gary E. Gerson at 412-219-6875 today for a free consultation.