|For Immediate Release
December 6, 2013
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Chief of Staff
OCDA RECEIVES $386,060 STATE GRANT TO INCREASE FIGHT AGAINST DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF DRUGS
SANTA ANA – The Orange County District Attorney’s Office (OCDA) has received a $386,060 state grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) to address the problem of driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs in Orange County. This is the fourth OTS grant awarded to OCDA in an effort to improve detection and prosecution of alcohol and drug-related DUI cases. The OTS grant is funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Between 2005 and 2012, the OCDA received over $1.3 million in OTS grants to facilitate the prosecution of DUI alcohol and drug cases by allowing deputy district attorneys and clerical support staff to focus exclusively on DUI cases.
In 2008, the OCDA created the first Vehicular Homicide Team of the Homicide Unit in the State of California, with specialized prosecutors and Investigators to vertically prosecute vehicle death cases. The Team gives presentations to college sororities, fraternities, and high school and elementary students to educate young drivers about the dangers of alcohol and drug impaired driving.
The new OTS grant will expand the prosecution, training and outreach services provided by the vertical prosecution team. It will also provide training and outreach to members of the general community, law enforcement and prosecutors in Orange County.
The OCDA Vehicular Homicide Team consists of Senior Deputy District Attorney Jennifer Walker and Deputy District Attorney Anna McIntire, who prosecute vehicular death cases. The Drug Impaired Driver Vertical Prosecution Team consists of Deputy District Attorneys Charlyn Bender, Jeffrey Kirk, Gautam Sood, and Amy Swanson, who prosecute drug-related DUI cases part-time.