Alyssas Law

To ensure heftier fines and consequences for unlicensed teen drivers and their parents

Laws to Change

On September 3, 2009 a young lady named Alyssa Mary Benedict, who just celebrated her 16th birthday on August 1, 2009 among family and friends, lost her life in a car accident. On the verge of adulthood, Alyssa was a high spirited, motivated, loving sister, daughter, and friend. She looked forward to the life before her and lived for the moment. Alyssa always had a smile to share and a beam of light shining off from her. She impacted so many lives of those she came into contact with. She had dreams, as most teens do. She loved to write, read and was a beautiful artist in so many ways, especially photography. Alyssa took to life as she took to being an original not a copy...always giving her best and quick to help those who fell behind.

On September 3, 2009 her life was tragically and unjustly ended by the grave decision of an unlicensed 15 year old driver, whom Alyssa called ?a friend.? and the young lady?s mother, whom she often affectionately referred to as 'mom'. Alyssa did make a bad choice to ride with the unlicensed driver, knowingly against the rules, and no she did not have a seatbelt on for the girls trying to get a bug out of the car. As girls will be girls. Alyssa took her seatbelt off and made that choice to ride in the van, and for this she paid the ultimate price "Her Life".

On that fatal night, Alyssa?s friend, being a 15 year old unlicensed driver of a motor vehicle, proceeded to; drive and make the choice to do it on the interstate. The driver and other passenger who was a licensed driver were injured from the crash. Alyssa was partially ejected from the van and her life taken from her in an instinct.

The unlicensed driver has expressed remorse over causing Alyssa?s death, along with the mother of the unlicensed driver whom said she didn?t know that her daughter took the van in the first place. In fact, only received a fine for driving with no license and has since turned sixteen and has gotten her license but with her mother?s approval and signature to receive it, and now is legal to drive and is doing so. The driver has not been charged nor has her mother of any wrong doing except for a citation fine.

For it was a tire blow out and not the drivers fault, but to an extent it was for with more experience and guidance of driving would have been able to possibly maintain control and keep it on the road to have it safely come to a stop.

The purpose of this petition is to force the law making bodies, the courts, parents, teenagers and the community at large, to hold accountable underage, unlicensed and teenage drivers, as well as those parents which knowingly permit it, for the consequences of their reckless indifference to human life. To fill in the loopholes in the laws to make it so the teenagers will make better decisions, whether they do or not they still are teenagers and as parents we should instill these practices into our children. To ensure heftier fines and consequences to these unlicensed drivers and parents who let this happen. Even in no fault accidents like this one. It is sad but a fact that 35,000 American teens have died in automobile crashes in the past five years. That?s 6,000 a year, 18 a day.

It is our hope, being the family and friends of Alyssa, to bring justice in Alyssa?s death and to raise awareness, among teens and their parents, so that other children will not suffer the same fate and Alyssa?s death will not be in vain. We ask...What if this was your child? We thank you for your support.

I would like to add that I was not aware that my daughter was with an unlicensed driver, and that when she left to the school event she was going with a licensed driver, and that I'm not trying to place the blame on anyone because Alyssa made that bad decision to ride with the unlicensed driver, but that 15 year old also made the decision to get behind the wheel when she could of handed the keys off to a licensed driver. What I'm trying to do is just make these kids and parents realize that driving is a privilege, an though laws may not change what the kids and parents are doing and they may not think about the consequences, but if it does happen the laws will be there and intact. Once again THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR SUPPORT!


Marie McGee-Benedict

LuAnn Jenkins