Farry, DiGirolamo Bill Named After Fallen Bucks County Officer Becomes Law
– Gov. Tom Wolf today signed into law legislation named in honor of a Bucks County police officer who was killed in the line of duty. The law, deemed the Officer Brian Gregg Act, allows police to do their job more safely and efficiently by enabling paramedics to conduct blood draws in alleged driving under the influence (DUI) cases, said Reps. Frank Farry (R-Langhorne) and Gene DiGirolamo (R-Bensalem), prime sponsors of the measure.
Gregg was shot and killed at St. Mary’s Hospital in 2005 after a suspect was able to gain possession of his partner’s weapon while undergoing blood and urine tests following a drunk driving arrest. Gregg’s partner and an emergency room technician were also shot.
“In addition to aiding our law enforcement, this law will help cut down on some of the wait time for obtaining crucial test results and reduce the number of times offenders are in the public emergency room,” Farry said.
Previously under state law, when police officers arrest an individual for suspicion of driving under the influence, the officer was required to take the suspect to the hospital to have his or her blood drawn for a blood alcohol content test. Paramedics were only authorized to exercise their skills in emergency 911 situations or when conducting a routine ambulance transport.
“Allowing paramedics to conduct blood draws in these situations is all about practicality and allowing police officers to get back to their duties and respond to other emergency calls,” DiGirolamo said. “This new law will also benefit small police departments with few officers on duty and in areas with hospitals located a distance away, as it’s imperative to keep officers where they need to be.”
“We owe it to Officer Brian Gregg and fallen officers across the nation to do everything we can to aid our police in carrying out their work in a timely and safe manner,” the lawmakers said.
Representative Frank Farry
Representative Gene DiGirolamo
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Abbey Haslam