Brandy Bottone was driving in the carpool lane in Dallas, Texas when she was pulled over by a police officer. He asked if anyone else was with her in the car since the HOV lane, which requires at least two people per vehicle.
“Yes, there is!” she answered.
“Uh, this!” she exclaimed, pointing to her belly.
You see, Brandy was 34 weeks pregnant with her daughter at the time. And though she wasn’t intending to take a political stand that day, Roe v. Wade had just been overturned and abortions had just been banned in her state of Texas. Brandy says she really wanted to get out of the ticket and couldn’t help but wonder if her unborn baby could be counted as a second passenger in light of the overturned bill.
Unsure of what to say in response, the officer still handed Brandy a ticket for more than $200. He said the law meant “two bodies outside of a body,” so he didn’t think her fetus counted — but that she could certainly fight the ticket if she wanted.
According to NBC, Brandy hired an attorney. Her case was ultimately dismissed without so much as a court hearing, and her story continues to spark debate on both sides.
Do you think an unborn child should count as a passenger?
Video Credit: THV11