Gov. Jim Doyle recently signed legislation toughening penalties on people who
drive while on drugs.
the “Baby Luke Bill,” AB458 was written largely in response to the December
2001 case of Michelle Logemann, Waukesha, WI, whose car was struck by a van
driven by Paul D. Wilson. Prosecutors said Wilson ingested cocaine and ran a
red light in Milwaukee, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported
new law, signed by the governor Dec. 4, makes it easier to prosecute drivers
who use illegal drugs by requiring only a showing that the driver had an
illegal drug in his system. Previous law required authorities to prove the
illegal drug actually impaired the driver.
mind-altering drugs are so dangerous it is illegal to sell, distribute or even
possess them. It makes perfect sense that a person should not be permitted to
shoot up with heroine or do a few lines of cocaine and then get behind the wheel
of a 2,000 pound bullet,” the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Mark Gundrum, R-New Berlin,
said in a recent statement.
who was 30 weeks pregnant, was critically injured in the crash, and lost her
young son hours after an emergency Caesarean section was performed.
toxicologists were unable to prove Wilson was impaired. Wilson pleaded no
contest to homicide by negligent use of a vehicle and was sentenced to a
maximum two-year sentence.
Under the new law, drugged drivers
could face the same penalties as drunken drivers, providing a 40-year sentence
for causing a death.