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Lawmakers Pass Hit-And-Run Bill

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RALEIGH. N.C. — State lawmakers passed a bill Wednesday that could stiffen penalties for hit-and-run drivers.

Under the measure, drivers who leave accident scenes where a person or people are injured would have their licenses revoked for two years.

Rep. Alex Warner, D-Cumberland County, wrote the bill. North Carolina's current law calls for a one-year suspension.

"With all the hit-and-run accidents, I mean we read about them daily. We can tell someone who's derelict with their driving. If you abuse this you are going to pay with your license," he said.

The Highway Patrol believes the stricter penalty could save lives.

"I think it will also have people think twice about this crime," Sgt. Everette Clendenin said.

The bill passed the House and Senate. Gov. Mike Easley is expected to sign the bill into law within the next 30 days.

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