Livingston County, MI -- In June of last year, Tim Panagis, 26, of Ann Arbor, Michigan, was on a bike ride with friends when he was unlawfully stopped, harassed and ticketed by a would-be tyrant with the Michigan State Police.
The Trooper, who remains unnamed, apparently had nothing better to do that day than to harass an innocent biker. The entire interaction was caught on the officer's dashcam.
As the dashcam video begins, we see the trooper following behind four bikers as the ride down the road.
The irate trooper then pulls over Panagis for allegedly impeding traffic. Upon exiting his patrol car, the trooper becomes immediately aggressive and launches a verbal assault.
Scolding Panagis like he's a lesser form of life, the trooper ignorantly and falsely accuses him of breaking the law -- but he had not.
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"You were in the roadway," the trooper said. "You were to the left of the white line. You can argue that with the judge," he says as he cites the cyclist for impeding traffic.
"Argue that with the judge," is exactly what Panagis did. On January 25, after watching the dashcam and seeing that he broke no law, Livingston County Circuit Judge David Reader found in favor of Panagis and reversed the district court's findings, dismissing the ticket.
According to the Detroit Free Press, Bryan Waldman, attorney with Lansing-based Sinas Dramis Law Firm, told the Free Press his client was complying with the law by riding close to the edge of the road. The law doesn't force cyclists to ride on the shoulder.
"Not only does the case solidify what the law requires of cyclists, but also demonstrates that police officers do, indeed, make mistakes. The case is also noteworthy because, while cyclists rarely fight a ticket, appealing a civil infraction — and winning — almost never happens," according to a news release issued by the law firm.
The trooper in the video below has no business being in the law enforcement business. Had a member of the private sector exhibited such obstinate and jackbooted ignorance at their place of work, they would have most assuredly been fired. However, as our readers know, police officers can kill innocent people, on video, and never be punished.