Texas woman says fetus allowed her to use HOV lane

Southwest

(File: Getty)

(The Hill) – A Texas woman said she received a second traffic ticket within a month after claiming that her unborn child allowed her to drive in the high-occupancy lane (HOV). 

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 person for HOV reasons, 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 reports 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 (TDOT) spokesperson 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.”

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