Charleston, W.Va. (AP) -- Legislation targeting drug dealers near school bus stops now also threatens prison for motorists who drive around stopped buses.
A Tuesday amendment keeps alive the push to increase criminal penalties against such drivers. It would make the offense on par with drunken driving.
A driver who causes injury would face up to three years in prison, or up to 10 if there's a death. Both crimes would be felonies.
The bill already enhances penalties against drug dealers caught within 100 feet of the view of a school bus stop.
It passed unanimously Tuesday from the House to the Senate.
The amendment was spurred by the 2007 death of Haven Brooke McCarthy. A driver who ignored the flashing lights killed the 6-year-old just as she got off her Lincoln County school bus.
(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
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