Pregnant motorist fights well, citing Roe v Wade reversal – Reuters

A pregnant woman tried to avoid a ticket for driving alone in a carpool lane, claiming her fetus is a person, local media reports

A pregnant woman in Texas is fighting a traffic fine for driving in a high-occupancy vehicle ‘carpool’ lane, arguing that her unborn child should now be considered a second occupant of the car, the authorities reported on Friday. local media.

According to NBC 5 DFW, in June 2022 Brandy Bottone of the City of Plano was driving on the Central Freeway when she was pulled over. Current rules allow drivers to use a busy lane only if there are two or more people present in a vehicle.

When the officer stopped the car, he started looking for other passengers and asked the pregnant woman if she was alone, Bottone recalled. « No, we are two » she replied, pointing to her belly. At the time, Bottone was 34 weeks pregnant.

« And then I said, ‘Well, I’m not trying to throw in a political mash-up here but, with everything that’s going on, this counts as a baby' » she said, referring to the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, a court ruling that protected a federal right to abortion.

The officer, however, did not understand him. Although the Texas criminal code recognizes a fetus as a person, the state’s transportation code does not. As a result, the mother received a $275 note, but said she intended to challenge the decision in court.

According to lawyers interviewed by the media, the problem in question lies in « uncharted territory. » “Different judges might treat this differently… There is no Texas law that says what to do in this situation. The Texas Transportation Code has not been amended recently to deal with this particular situation,” said Dallas appeals attorney Chad Ruback.

In late June, the United States Supreme Court overturned the 1973 decision in Roe v Wade, thereby removing federal abortion protections and placing the responsibility to legalize or ban the procedure on individual states. This decision was criticized by many women’s rights activists and by US President Joe Biden, who denounced the decision, saying it was a « sad day for court and country. »

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