ALBANY, NY-A legal loophole in state law is one step closer to being closed with the state Senate's passing Monday of "Alix's Law".
The bill was named after Alix Rice, the 18-year-old struck and killed last July by Dr. James Corasanti.
Current law only requires drivers to report an accident when they know or have reason to know they hit someone or something. Under the current loophole, drunk drivers are able to flee the scene of a crash and later claim they did not know any damage or injury took place. Corasanti said he was not aware he had hit a person and as a result, jurors acquitted him on the felony charge of leaving the scene of an accident.
The Getzville doctor was found guilty of misdemeanor drunken driving and is currently serving a one year prison sentence.
"Alix's Law" would make it illegal for a driver to leave the scene of an accident after hitting any object, so that drunk drivers are held responsible.
"This and other heartbreaking stories of drunk driving fatalities have really shined a light on a major problem we are facing in WNY and across the state," said Senator Patrick Gallivan (R-C-I, Elma), the bill's sponsor, but it has also lit a spark. The outpouring of activism in Alix's name has been remarkable and I hope this law will be enacted this year as fitting tribute to a young woman who's story has inspired so many".
The bill now moves on to the state Assembly for action.