RIVERSIDE DA’S OFFICE RECEIVES GRANT TO PROSECUTE DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF DRUGS

RIVERSIDE – Drivers arrested in Riverside County on suspicion of driving under the influence
of drugs or a combination of alcohol and drugs can expect to continue facing highly specialized
prosecutors funded by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety.

The $423,895 grant to the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office continues to fund a
vertical prosecution team that will handle driving under the influence of drugs (DUID) cases
from arrest all the way through sentencing. The new grant covers two deputy district attorneys
for fiscal year 2017/2018.

Over the previous grant period from Oct. 1, 2016 to Set. 30, 2017, the DA’s Office countywide
filed 7,344 DUI cases. Of those, 474 filed cases across Riverside County were driving under the
influence of drugs only and another 382 cases filed were a combination of drugs and alcohol.
While alcohol remains the primary cause in DUI crashes, the DA’s Office supports the new effort
from the state Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) that aims to drive home awareness that “DUI
Doesn’t Just Mean Booze”. Prescription medications and marijuana can, by themselves or in
combination with alcohol, impair drivers resulting in a DUI arrest.

Under the grant, prosecution team members will work with the state’s Traffic Safety Resource
Prosecutor Training Network to expand knowledge and resources in the office by obtaining and
delivering specialized training, including 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 grant period runs from Oct. 1, 2017, through Sept. 30, 2018. Funding comes from grants by
OTS, through the National Highway Traffic Administration.

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