For Immediate ReleaseNovember 04, 2016
San Rafael, CA – Those arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI) in Marin County, especially repeat offenders and those involved in fatal or injury crashes, can expect to face highly trained, specialized prosecutors, thanks to a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety.
The $325,000 grant to the Marin County District Attorney’s Office will fund a Vertical Prosecution team that will work cases from arrest through conviction and sentencing.
“As evidenced by the impressive results obtained by our Vertical DUI Prosecution Team over the past few years, it is clear that the DUI Prosecution Grant has provided the Marin County District Attorney’s Office with the necessary financial means to successfully prosecute serial DUI drivers and to keep Marin highways and streets safe for all drivers and pedestrians," said District Attorney Edward Berberian. "By renewing our grant funding for the upcoming fiscal year, the Office of Traffic Safety has allowed us to continue this important public safety program.”
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 448 felony and misdemeanor cases of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. The office as a whole filed 1,153 cases.
Prosecution team members will work with the State’s Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor 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 4 deaths and 94 serious injuries as a result of DUI crashes in Marin 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 Marin County District Attorney's Office will be working together to help keep the streets and highways safe across Marin County and the state.
Funding for the program comes from a grant by the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Ed BerberianDistrict AttorneyCounty of Marin
Marin County Civic Center3501 Civic Center DriveSan Rafael, CA 94903(415) 473-6450