Texas Strip Searches Driver for Failure to Signal a Turn
Unless you're the fastidious type, you might want to avoid driving in Melissa. WFAA reports that police in the Texas town pulled over one Mark Robinson for failure to use his turn signal. The police officer then hauled the 24-year-old to jail where "he was booked, strip searched, and sat for 3 hours." Robinson found himself sitting next to [s]Bubba[/s] other dangerous criminals. "They asked me what I was in there for and I said a turn signal violation." Robinson had a clean (to that point) rap sheet and claimed he'd never been jailed before (yeah? what about that faulty taillight thing?). However, Robison does admit that he "challenged" the officer's questions when he was stopped. Still, Melissa's police chief was aghast. "In the 6 years I've been the police chief, this is the first time," says Chief Duane Smith. But he stands behind his officer. "I'm not going to let some little out-of-town asshole punk kid mouth off to my officer. He's lucky I didn't beat the shit out of him." No, I'm kidding. I just made that up. As far as I know.
I think in Ohio (and Michigan), just as soon as you pass your driving test, the examiner breaks off your turn signal lever as a rite of passage. I also have concluded that in Michigan, virtually all drivers must become illiterate as quickly as they get behind a wheel, too (because they cannot read S T O P on those odd little octogonal bright red signs). Also, innumerate. (Can't fathom 55 or 70, think they mean 75 and 95 respectively).
RI driving test: Q. What does it mean when the right side indicator on the car ahead of you flashes repeatedly? A: Nothing.
There was a video on the net a year or so ago where something similar happened to a kid in Missouri. Except you gotta' figure this kid was looking for trouble since he had a video camera broadcasting the stop to a remote storage device. The cop was a jerk from the beginning and it got worse. While it was somewhat of a set-up, it caught a bad cop. The kid had done nothing wrong to begin with. The video caught the cop first manufacturing a moving violation, which the video clearly indicated had not occurred (turn signal again). Then when the kid calmly and politely told the cop that he had used his turn signal and wanted to know why the cop had pulled him over, the cop started to lose it and yanked him out of the car. The kid pointed out that the incident was being recorded and then the cop started threatening him with bodily injury and some other events that might occur while he was in jail before cuffing him and hauling him off to jail. You know what his chief said? I stand by my officer. He did nothing wrong. Blah, blah, blah.