Proposed Bill Would Make Texting and Driving Penalty More Harsh

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SACRAMENTO — At first glance, DeeDee Gonzalez looks just like everyone else — but two years ago, she was torn apart by a distracted driver.

Gonzalez was riding her motorcycle in Southern California when a texting teen crashed into her.

Texting and driving was illegal at the time, but Gonzalez says what happened to her is evidence the penalties aren’t harsh enough.

AAA is one of the organizations rallying around Gonzalez and others like her in pushing for Assembly Bill 47, which would stiffen the penalties for texting and driving and treat the offense like a moving violation.

“Not an hour goes by that I don’t have some sort of ache or pain or discomfort,” Gonzalez said.

Despite years of rehab, Gonzalez has accepted the painful metal rods that keep her upright and the even more painful truth that her life will never be the same.

What she won’t accept is that this keeps happening to others.

“Maybe having a higher penalty and a point on your DMV record will be what it takes to deter people,” she said.

The Assembly Transportation Committee recently advanced AB47 to the appropriations committee.

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