The Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office has been awarded a specialty grant to prosecute cases against repeat offenders and those involved in fatal or injury crashes in cases involving driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
The $194,478 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety to the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office will fund a Vertical Prosecution team that will work cases from arrest through sentencing.
Funding from this DUI Prosecution Grant will aid the District Attorney’s Office in handling cases throughout each step of the criminal process, prosecuting both alcohol and drug-impaired driving cases. In fatal and major injury DUI vehicle collisions, members of the team may respond to the crash scene to be part of the investigation.
In the past year under the 2015-2016 OTS grant, the vertical prosecution team filed 254 felony and misdemeanor cases of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. The office as a whole filed 1,283 DUI cases.
Prosecution team members will work with the State’s Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor Program to expand knowledge and resources in the office by obtaining and delivering specialized training, including training in the emerging problem of drug-impaired driving.
Team members will share information with peers and law enforcement personnel throughout the county and across the state. The purpose of the program is to prevent impaired driving and reduce alcohol and drug-impaired traffic fatalities and injuries. In 2013 there were 20 deaths and 343 serious injuries as a result of DUI crashes in the County.
“When there is a trained, seasoned and committed team working serious DUI cases, prosecutors get the positive results needed,” said OTS Director Rhonda Craft. “The Office of Traffic Safety and the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office will be working together to help keep the streets and highways safe across Modesto and the state.”