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Raptakis to Introduce Bill Protecting Children From Being Left Alone in Vehicles

Thursday, December 28, 2017

 

Democratic State Senator Leonidas Raptakis

Democratic State Senator Leonidas Raptakis will reintroduce legislation that would make it an offense to leave a child under the age of seven unattended in a car for over 15 minutes.

“While child neglect and child endangerment are serious crimes. We have no law providing a penalty for children left unattended in cars. As it stands now, the law only authorizes law enforcement officials to provide a verbal warning. There is a serious danger of abduction and an even greater danger from excessive temperatures inside a car," said Raptakis.  

"Animals are protected from being left unattended in a car with extreme temperatures. In fact, the penalty is a $1,000 fine. It’s time we give our children the same protection.  This law would be especially important during the holiday season with plunging temperatures and holiday shopping.  It’s time we protect our children,” added Raptakis.

The Legislation

The legislation would make it an offense to leave a child under the age of seven unattended in a car for more than 15 minutes. 

The bill will also grant police and first-responders more leeway in determining if a child is in danger if left alone in a car.

The legislation would make the offense a misdemeanor punishable with a fine of up to $1,000 and up to one year in jail.  The penalties of the proposal mirror that of legislation applying to leaving animals in a car unattended.

The new version of the legislation will add language to the bill that says that any law-enforcement officer, firefighter, or emergency medical technician who has reason to believe that an unattended child in a car is in danger, will have the authority to enter the car by any reasonable means necessary to protect the health or well-being of the child.

 

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Sponsor: GoLocalProv

Sample: N=403

Rhode Island General Election Voters Margin of Error: +/- 4.9% at 95% Confidence Level

Interviewing Period: October 9-11, 2017

Mode: Landline (61%) and Mobile (39%)

Telephone Directed by: John Della Volpe, SocialSphere, Inc.

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Yes: 100%

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Democrat: 32%

Republican: 15%

Moderate: .4%

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Probably be voting: 13%

50-50: 9%

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Right track: 39%

Wrong track: 45%

Mixed: 10%

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Jobs and economy:  21%

Education: 12%

Taxes: 12%

Roads: 12%

State budget: 9%

Corruption/Public integrity: .8%

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Governor: 3%

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Other: 7%

Don’t know: .9%

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Changed for the better: 35%

Changed for the worse: 16%

Not changed at all: 43%

Don't know/Refused: 5%

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Changed for the better: 26%

Changed for the worse: 19%

Not changed at all: 54%

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Definitely approve: 15%

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Definitely reject: 48%

Don't know: 4%

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18-24: 7%

25-34: 15%

35-44: 15%

45-54: 20%

55-64: 17%

65+: 25%

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0-11: 2%

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Technical/Vocational school: 1%

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English: 13%

Italian: 13%

Irish: 12%

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Latino/Hispanic: 6%

French: 6%

Portuguese: 3%

Jewish: 3%

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Cannot rate: 7%

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Good: 29%
Fair: 21%
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Fair: 30%
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Fair: 21%
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Cannot rate: 25%

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Excellent: 3%
Good: 20%
Fair: 28%
Poor: 17%
Never heard of: 13%
Cannot rate: 19%

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Excellent: 4%
Good: 18%
Fair: 24%
Poor: 13%
Never heard of: 21%
Cannot rate: 21%

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Excellent: 5%
Good: 21%
Fair: 21%
Poor: 10%
Never heard of: 20%
Cannot rate: 23%

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Excellent: 4%
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Fair: 24%
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