Emma's Law Closer to Becoming Law

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By Rochelle Dean

(WOLO) COLUMBIA,S.C., --

Bill 137 or Emma's Law as it is commonly referred to, has been an ongoing battle for more than a year. The Longstreet family has been pushing for tougher penalties for first time offenders after losing their 6 year old daughter Emma on their way to church back in 2011.

Wednesday the family came one step closer to the victory they'd been hoping for. While the measure passed in the house and the senate it will still have to have a 3rd reading before it can make it to the Governor's desk.

" Our hearts are hurting and we need that lady of Justice to tip back just a little on the scale to help those to be on the lawful side."
Said David Longstreet who along with his wife has been spearheading the movement for harsher penalties to cut down on dui deaths and repeat offenders.

Lawmakers were expected to make amendments to the bill, but compromised in order to get closer to passing the law before they break for the summer. If that happens, The Longstreet family and anyone who has been affected by the death of a loved one would have to wait until next year for the issue to be discussed again.

Lawmakers who helped push for the bill say credit is due to the diligence of the Longstreet family and Columbia Fire Chief Aubrey Jenkins family who in March lost his 3 year old Grand Nephew Josiah after the car his mother was driving was hit by an alleged drunk driver.

The 3rd reading for this measure is set for Thursday morning.

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