Assembly Approves Bill to get Tough on Reckless and Aggressive Drivers
The full General Assembly has voted unanimously to pass a bill to crack down on reckless and aggressive drivers after a Mercer County incident left a teen-age girl paralyzed.
The measure is dubbed, “Jessica’s Law.” It’s named after Jessica Rogers, who was 16 at the time of the accident and is now 23. She testified at the Assembly Committee hearing last year and was in attendance with her family today for the Assembly vote. She was a passenger in a vehicle that slammed into a telephone pole after the driver – angered that he had been cut-off – attempted to illegally pass another car on the shoulder. Both Jessica and another passenger were seriously injured in the wreck. The driver was convicted of two counts of assault by auto and sentenced to six months in jail and five years probation. The driver served four months.
Jessica says she’s happy that road rage could soon be would included in the state’s assault-by-auto statute and lead to enhanced punishments for individuals convicted under that law.
“I don’t want a family to go through what I had to go through and what my family had to go through,” says Jessica. “It not only changed my life just being in a wheelchair, but it’s an everyday struggle. I can’t move my fingers. There are so many things that I can’t do and it’s all because of the road rage incident.”