Archive for Monday, April 1, 2013

DUI bill that would allow stiffer charges passes in Kansas Legislature

April 1, 2013


A bill that would strengthen penalties against drunken drivers was passed unanimously in the Kansas House and Senate last month.

The bill, advocated by Douglas County District Attorney Charles Branson, would allow prosecutors to charge drunken drivers with aggravated battery in injury accidents.

A previous Supreme Court rule required additional evidence of reckless behavior in order to file battery charges in drunken driving cases.

"We are hopeful that this will close yet one more loophole in our DUI laws so that we may prosecute those drivers that ignore the dangers of driving under the influence and injure someone," Branson said.

The Supreme Court rule prevented Branson's office from filing other charges against Kansas University student Julian Kuszmaul, 22, following an Aug. 26 accident in which Kuszmaul's vehicle hit KU student Colby Liston, who lost both legs. Kuszmaul had a blood-alcohol level three times the legal limit at the time of the incident.

"If this law had been in place a year sooner, it would have definitely been utilized in the Liston matter," Branson said.

The bill passed in the House 124-0, and 40-0 in the Senate, and will now head to the Gov. Sam Brownback's office.


Steven Gaudreau 1 year ago

Acoording to the National Hwy Safety web site, DUI fatalities dropped in the 1990's only to steadily raise to an all time high in 2008. How is this possible? All states have passed stricter laws, lowered BAC levels and revoked drivers licenses. I'm confused because we passed stricter laws and it not only didn't stop the criminals behavior it increased. I was under the impression by pro gun controllers that passing more laws lessened the chance of criminal behavior. I guess jail time, suspended d.l and alcohol ignition locks really don't stop criminals from continuing to act like criminals.


Number_1_Grandma 1 year ago

If we 'really' want to fix DUI problem, then NO plea bargains!

Do the crime, do the time!


Steve Swaggerty 1 year ago

Does this include Mental/Psychological injuries?


ksjayhawk74 1 year ago

Wow, it was incredibly dangerous getting that photo. That car obviously doesn't have a windshield because there is no way you can stack beer cans 3 tiers high on a dashboard.


mags_and_k 1 year ago

Focus boys!!! The article.....not the picture!!! hahahaha


Steve Swaggerty 1 year ago

Schlitz Tall Boy? Haven't been sold around here in 20 years!!


L7 1 year ago

There isn't a single beer on that dash fit to drink. The charges should also include 'poor taste'.


KansasLiberal 1 year ago

This sounds WAY too vague to me. What's considered an injury? Anybody can say that they were hurt in a car accident, and some people may choose to say that they're injured just to make things harder for the drunk driver.


cheeseburger 1 year ago

Much needed. Long overdue.

It remains to be seen whether our weak DA will ever assess the stiffer charges against any offenders in this county.


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