State Watch

Pregnant Texas woman says she’s gotten second traffic ticket claiming fetus lets her use HOV lane

AP Photo/Eric Gay, File
FILE – Demonstrators march and gather near the Texas state Capitol in Austin following the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade on June 24, 2022. A federal judge in Texas issued a ruling on Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, temporarily blocking the federal government from enforcing guidance against the state that requires hospitals to provide abortion services if the life of the mother is at risk. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)

A pregnant Texas woman says she has received a second traffic ticket within a month after claiming that her unborn child allows her to drive in the high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane. 

In an interview, Plano resident Brandy Bottone told The Dallas Morning News that authorities ticketed her for the same offense at the same location after a previous citation was dropped. 

Bottone gained massive attention last month after claiming that Texas’s new anti-abortion laws mean her fetus should count as a passenger in HOV lanes, according to the Morning News.

The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office decided to dismiss Bottone’s first ticket, agreeing that legally the situation is unclear. 

The Morning News reported that the Texas legislature is set to clarify the issue of when a fetus counts as a person in its next session.

“Nobody is answering whether it’s right or wrong,” Bottone, who has since given birth to a baby girl, told the Morning News. “They dismissed it. Why do I have to change my belief? … It doesn’t answer the question. Did I get it right or did I get it wrong?”

In a statement, Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) spokesman Tony Hartzel told the newspaper that it doesn’t have the control to make decisions on “law enforcement or prosecution decisions.” 

“TxDOT has no role in law enforcement or prosecution decisions,” Hartzel added. “The dismissal of one citation has not affected the department’s relationship with law enforcement.”

Tags Abortion in the United States abortion rights Dallas Fetus Fetuses Supreme Court of the United States Texas Texas Department of Transportation

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