Ind. man argues he has constitutional right to flip off police

A motorist who was ticketed for flipping off an Indiana state trooper has filed a federal lawsuit saying the citation violates his First Amendment rights


By Cliff Pinckard
Advance Ohio Media, Cleveland

INDIANAPOLIS — A motorist who was ticketed last summer for flipping off an Indiana state trooper has filed a federal lawsuit saying the citation violates his First Amendment rights.

Mark May of Terre Haute, Ind., admits making the gesture at Indiana State Police Master Trooper Matt Ames, the Tribune Star reports. He flipped off Ames while driving by the trooper, who had stopped another motorist.

May says he was cut off by Ames as the trooper chased down the other motorist.

Ames pulled over May and ticketed him for "provocation," according to the Tribune Star. It has a fine up to $500.

The lawsuit was filed in Southern District of Indiana by the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana.

"While perhaps ill advised, Mr. May's gesture, which in no way interfered with the Master Trooper's lawful activities, was fully protected by the First Amendment," Indiana ACLU legal director Kenneth Falk said, according to the Kansas City Star.

May is seeking unspecified damages and legal fees, reports say.

©2018 Advance Ohio Media, Cleveland

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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