Woman Who Claimed Her Unborn Child Counted as HOV Lane Passenger Gets Another Ticket

Brandy Bottone was pulled over last month for driving in a carpool lane alone. The ticket was dismissed after she argued her unborn child was a passenger.

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Brandy Bottone is fighting another traffic ticket.

The 34-year-old Texas resident made headlines this summer after she was cited for driving alone in an HOV lane reserved for vehicles with at least two occupants. Bottone told the officer she did not violate any laws, because her unborn child counted as a living person and was, therefore, entitled to drive in the carpool lane. The incident took place on June 29, just days after the United States Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark decision that established the federal constitutional right to abortion.

Though the $275 ticket was ultimately dismissed, Bottone recently revealed she was cited for the same violation just a month later. She told the Dallas News the traffic stop took place on Aug. 3 on the exit ramp of U.S. Highway 75 South—the same location where authorities issued the first ticket.

“‘You again?’” she recalled a deputy telling her. “‘So when are you going to have this baby?”

“Tomorrow,” she replied.

“Oh, good luck,” he said before giving her another ticket. 

Bottone told Dallas News she wasn’t trying to make any political statement, and was simply “trying to get where she needed to go.” She said she believed she had the right to drive in the HOV lane because questions surrounding a fetus’ personhood have remained unsettled. Her argument was supported by the DA’s office decision to throw out her initial ticket: “Based on a review of the facts and circumstances of this case, and the applicable law, the state moves to dismiss the case,” the office wrote. 

“Nobody is answering whether it’s right or wrong,” Bottone explained. “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?”

Bottone did not reveal the second citation until Sunday. Claire Crouch, a spokeswoman from the Dallas District Attorney’s office, said the case is still pending. A hearing for Bottone’s second ticket has yet to be scheduled.

According to the Dallas News, the woman has since given birth to a girl.

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