Legislation changing the way intoxicated minors are processed and ultimately released stems from a tragic death of a local young man, Conor Vesper, in 2015.Following his death, family and friends worked to change the law by contacting their representatives at the Illinois State House. Representative Avery Bourne (R-Raymond) signed on as the Chief House Sponsor of Senate Bill 2185.
“Conor’s Law will mean that the way law enforcement releases minors will be uniform throughout the state,” said Bourne. “This change in current law will hopefully ensure that this situation never occurs again. I thank those who brought the idea forward. Their hard work and dedication to bring change from tragedy will ensure that Conor’s life will continue to impact people’s lives in a positive way in the future,” added Representative Bourne.
Conor’s Law requires the Illinois Law Enforcement Training Standards Board and the Illinois State Police will create a model policy to train law enforcement officers to respond to a person arrested while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. They will also be required to create a policy for the release of persons arrested under the influence of alcohol or drugs who are under the age of 21 years of age. This policy will include language requiring the arresting officer to make a reasonable attempt to contact a responsible adult who is willing to take custody of the person who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Working with Senator Manar, Rep. Bourne passed the legislation unanimously out of the House and it now awaiting the Governor’s consideration to become law.