Eyewitness News


A proposed bill would allow Suffolk County to opt out of ride sharing until the state addressesthe issue of level one sex offenders being allowed to drive for ride sharing services, like Uberand Lyft, if their convictions were more than seven years ago.

There is strong support for the bill from Suffolk County legislators and Parents with Megan'sLaw.

They held a press conference Thursday.

Our issue is not with Uber, Lyft. The law has a loophole and that loophole has to be fixed inorder for our community to be safe, said Laura Ahearn, Parents for Megan's Law.

The loophole is a potentially dangerous one.

Under the recently approved New York State law regarding ride sharing, level one sex offenderswho committed their crimes more than seven years ago are eligible to be drivers for services likeUber and Lyft.

Level one offenders can be offenders who are convicted, and registered sex offenders convictedof raping and sodomizing a 23-year-old female, Ahearn said. Forcibly raping a 4-year-old, here'sanother sodomy first degree against a 9-year-old, another one sexually abusing a 5-year-old.

Thursday, Suffolk County Legislator Leslie Kennedy announced a bill that would allow SuffolkCounty to opt out of ride sharing until the state addresses the level one sex offender issue.

The vetting is not sufficient, the stats on sexual predators and recidivism are notcomforting, said Kennedy, (R) Nesconset.

Just last week Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone held a press conference announcing ridesharing was coming to the county June 29th no matter what.

A spokesperson says he supports the effort to close this loophole and is considering allowing avote on Kennedy's bill.

I don't know how in good conscience you can jump into something without knowing all the safetyconcerns that are behind there, said Legislator Kevin McCaffrey, (R) Lindenhurst.

If Bellone does not approve a vote on Kennedy's bill for Tuesday, it won't happen for at leastanother month.

Ride sharing goes into effect in Suffolk County on June 29th. (Hauppauge, NY)

Message from Executive Director Laura A. Ahearn: Parents for Megan's Law and the Crime VictimsCenter provides prevention education, advocacy, counseling and other valuable support services tochild and adult victims of sexual assault and to all victims of violent crime. Please visit ourwebsite at www.parentsformeganslaw.org for news, information and resources in your community.