SB 356 Enhances penalties for chronic and aggravated drunk offenders and creates crime of aggravated vehicular manslaughter
Sponsor: Shields
LR Number: 1595S.02I Fiscal Note: 1595-02
Committee: Judiciary and Civil & Criminal Jurisprudence
Last Action: 2/17/2005 - Second Read and Referred S Judiciary and Civil & Criminal Jurisprudence Committee Journal Page: S249
Title: Calendar Position:
Effective Date: August 28, 2005

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Current Bill Summary


SB 356 - Under the current law, a person applying for a limited driving privilege is barred from receiving a limited driving privilege if he or she has previously been granted the privilege within the immediate preceding five years. Under this act, this restriction is removed.

This act creates the crime of aggravated vehicular manslaughter. A person commits this crime if he or she while in an intoxicated condition, operates a motor vehicle in this state, and when so operating with criminal negligence:

(a) Causes the death of any person not a passenger in the vehicle operated by the defendant, or

(b) Causes the death of two or more persons, or

(c) Causes the death of any person while the defendant's blood alcohol is greater than or equal to .20 percent of alcohol by weight in the defendant's blood.

Committing the crime of aggravated vehicular manslaughter is a Class B felony.

This act creates two new types of offenders for the purposes of applying the enhanced penalties and prison requirements of Section 577.023, RSMo.

The act modifies the definition of a "persistent offender". Under the provisions of the act, a "persistent offender" is a person convicted of two or more intoxication-related traffic offenses. Under the current law, the prior offenses must have occurred within 10 years of the offense for which the person is being charged.

The act defines an "aggravated offender" as a person who has pleaded to or been found guilty of:

(1) Three or more intoxication-related traffic offenses or

(2) One intoxicated-related traffic offense and certain enumerated crimes (involuntary manslaughter, aggravated vehicular manslaughter, assault in the second degree, or assault of a law enforcement officer).

This act defines a "chronic offender" as a person who has pleaded guilty to or has been found guilty of:

(1) Four or more intoxication-related traffic offenses;

(2) On two or more of separate occasions certain enumerated crimes (e.g. involuntary manslaughter, aggravated vehicular manslaughter, assault in the second degree); or

(3) Two or intoxicated-related traffic offenses plus has been found guilty of certain enumerated crimes (e.g. involuntary manslaughter, aggravated vehicular manslaughter, assault in the second degree).

Any person who is found guilty of a DWI or driving with an excessive blood alcohol content (BAC) and is proved to be an aggravated offender shall be guilty of a Class C felony. Aggravated offenders shall not be eligible for parole or probation until they serve a minimum of 60 days imprisonment.

Any person who is found guilty of a DWI or driving with an excessive blood alcohol content (BAC) and is proved to be a chronic offender shall be guilty of a Class B felony. Chronic offenders shall not be eligible for parole or probation until they serve a minimum of two years imprisonment.

STEPHEN WITTE