Leandra’s Law was passed last December in memory of 11-year-old Leandra Rosado.
Leandra was killed in a car, driven by a drunk driver, in 2009.
Leandra’s father worked tirelessly to pass the law, which makes it a felony to drink and drive with a child on board.
While a DWI can be life-changing for anyone, when you add a child’s life to the equation, some say there is just no excuse.
“You’re disgusted with their behavior,” says Sergeant Randall French, of the Troy Police Department.
French has been with the Troy Police Department for seven years, and calls a DWI a completely preventable crime.
French says it’s absolutely reckless to knowingly go out and drink and then drive, but says there is one thing that makes it worse.
“To also put a child’s life, who also has no choice in the matter, in the line of fire, is reprehensible activity. There’s no excuse whatsoever.”
No excuse and no leniency thanks to Leandra’s Law.
However, during the past year, there were still 661 arrests statewide.
“The fact that people are out there taking risks with children in the backseat is definitely a major thing,” says attorney Mike Macomber, of Tully, Rinckey & Associates.
A major thing that is still happening in the Capital Region.
Taking a look at the amount of arrests in the area during the past year, statistics show there have been 25 in Albany county, 14 in Rensselaer county, nine in Saratoga county and five in Schenectady county.
The good news? The same report also shows the number of adults arrested for DWI since Leandra’s Law took effect is down 10,000 compared to the year before.
“I think the biggest benefit about it at this point is the awareness about it,” says Macomber. “Here we are talking about this, and a year ago this wasn’t going on as much.” Another part of Leandra’s Law requires offenders to blow into an interlock device before their car will even start.
News 10′s Taryn Fitsik spoke with Lenny Rosado, Leandra’s father, back in September when he made a visit to Albany.
Rosado said his next plan is to take the law to the U.S. Capitol, hoping to firmly protect children nationwide, who might be in his daughter’s shoes someday.