Governor signs felony DUI bill for repeat offenders into law

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DENVER -- Gov. John Hickenlooper signed a bill into law Monday that makes the fourth DUI a felony, punishable by up to six years in prison.

This comes after a FOX 31 Denver “Problem Solvers” investigation exposing the crack in the system that allowed thousands of repeat offenders to get off with just a misdemeanor.

The investigation found Colorado had some of the most lax laws in the country, one of only four states that did not have a felony DUI law on the books.

“There’s now one less state,” Hickenlooper said as he signed the bill into law. “There's got to be consequences for people's actions on a repeated basis."

Gail Parrish has been pushing lawmakers for tougher DUI laws in Colorado since her daughter, Jenna Breen, was killed by a repeat offender in January 2012. She stood in a packed crowd of victims’ families and lawmakers knowing her hard work had paid off.

“It’s bittersweet,” Parrish said, “I know (Jenna) is watching. She is here with us and she is very, very OK with this.”

The felony DUI law takes effect Aug. 5.

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