The California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) — through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration — has awarded a $1.5 million grant to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office for DUI training and prosecution, DA George Gascón announced.
“We remain committed to keeping impaired drivers off the road that saves lives and improves public safety,” Gascón said. “This grant will go a long way in advancing our goal to reducing alcohol and drug-related fatalities and injuries.”
The District Attorney’s DUI Training and Prosecution Section (DTAPS) was implemented to further the goals of preventing impaired driving and reducing alcohol and drug-related fatalities and injuries. The funding from OTS will continue to improve the training tools and resources used to work with police agencies and increase the number of officers who are certified Drug Recognition Experts in Los Angeles County, Gascón said.
According to Gascón, Drug Recognition Experts are in a unique position to articulate the effects of impairment caused by the various drug categories, and they can determine if someone was impaired by drugs, alcohol or a combination of the two while driving. Their testimony in DUI drug cases is an invaluable asset in the effort to deter drug-impaired driving, Gascón said.
As part of this grant, OTS will partially fund a Drug Recognition Expert through the District Attorney’s Bureau of Investigation. While working in DTAPS, the Drug Recognition Expert will be made available to all deputy district attorneys for DUI-related issues.
[Information via news release from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.]