Man sues after getting ticket for making obscene gesture at copReprints
An Indiana man who was ticketed after making a crude gesture at a state police trooper has filed a federal lawsuit, alleging his constitutional rights were violated, the Associated Press reported Saturday.
Mark May of Terre Haute, Indiana, filed his suit Thursday against the Indiana State Police trooper, admitting he waved his middle finger at the trooper on Aug. 21, 2017, because he was cut off while the officer pulled over another motorist, and that the First Amendment entitles him to express his irritation in such a manner.
As a result of his gesture, Mr. May was issued a “provocation” ticket after the action, according to the lawsuit.
Indiana Criminal Code states the ticket, which carries a fine of up to $500, is issued when “a person who recklessly, knowingly or intentionally engages in conduct that is likely to provoke a reasonable person to commit battery commits provocation.”
“While perhaps ill advised, Mr. May’s gesture… was fully protected by the First Amendment,” the man’s lawyer told the media.