Police Complaint Against Speed Trap Crier Dismissed

A North Texas judge has dismissed a police complaint against a man arrested for holding a sign warning drivers of a speed trap.

The judge on Wednesday threw out the misdemeanor charge of violating Frisco's sign ordinance that 33-year-old Ron Martin faced because the complaint didn't specify how he violated the lengthy ordinance, according to his attorney, Mark Meisinger.

Martin was holding a sign in October that read "Police Ahead" while standing in the median of a busy avenue in Frisco, north of Dallas. Nearby officers monitoring traffic saw him with the sign and arrested him. He pleaded not guilty to the charge last month.

Meisinger said Thursday that the sign ordinance is dozens of pages long and overly broad.

"They have to tell him what he's charged with so he can defend himself," Meisinger said of his client.

Martin was forced to pay $217 to bond out of jail and is hoping to recoup the money, Meisinger said.

Martin has said his intention last October was only to urge motorists to drive more slowly. He said a motorcycle officer once nearly struck his vehicle when the officer quickly pulled out to pursue a speeding motorist, Meisinger said.

Martin's free speech rights were violated by police, Meisinger said.

The city has the option of refiling the case with a more specific charge, but Meisinger said it wasn't clear Thursday if it intends to.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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