Jocelyn’s Law passes State Senate

ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB) – A bill that would increase vehicular manslaughter to vehicular homicide for anyone convicted of driving under the influence three previous times has passed the State Senate.

Senator Patrick Gallivan announced Jocelyn’s Law was passed on Tuesday. The bill is named for Jocelyn Elberson, who along with Sheila Pelton, was killed when a man operating a motorcycle while under the influence struck them as they walked along an Amherst bike path in November 2012.

The motorcyclist, David Smith of Niagara Falls, had four previous DWI arrest in New York, Florida and Ohio. He was sentenced in March 2013 to four to 12 years in prison.

Under current law, any driver with one previous conviction of driving under the influence can be charged with vehicular manslaughter. But there are no additional enhancements for those who are repeatedly caught driving under the influence.

Jocelyn’s Law now moves to the State Assembly. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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