Florida Highway Patrol illegally tickets motorists who warn others about speed traps

According to http://www.wtsp.com

Tampa, Florida — When the Florida Highway Patrol pulls someone over on the highway, it’s usually because they were speeding.

But Eric Campbell was pulled over and ticketed while he was driving the speed limit.

Campbell says, “I was coming up the Veterans Expressway and I notice two Florida Highway Patrol Cars sitting on the side of the road in the median, with lights off.”

Campbell says he did what he always does: flashed his lights on and off to warn drivers coming from the other direction that there was speed trap ahead.

According to Campbell, 60 seconds after passing the trooper, “They were on my tail and they pulled me over.”

Campbell says the FHP trooper wrote him a ticket for improper flashing of high beams. Campbell says the trooper told him what he had done was illegal.



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  • gerry

    What about other states, like MA and NH ?

    What about honking your horn – is that illegal ?

  • There have been times where I inadvertently turned my lights off for a split second when I meant to turn on the wipers or a turn signal etc, was that illegal too? Fucking pigs.

  • EricC

    Back in December 2009 when I first got this ticket, I posted over at the LEOAffairs website. I posted a rather non-descript hypothetical scenario asking if any LEO would ticket a motorist that ‘rats out’ their position. They piled on, saying of course… some even going as far as using obstruction charges – even though they admittedly knew full well that it wouldn’t ‘stick’.

    My, how things changed as of the end of August this year. Not too many bragging about what they do to ‘flashers’.


  • Jay


    If you happened to do someone a service by it, then apparently the answer is yes.

  • I’d fight it, and I’d say exactly the same thing that hikaricore did. They can’t prove otherwise, so you’d probably get off.

  • Charles

    Chickenshit cops ..Fight the Ticket !!!!

  • Hoags

    I’d like to echo gerry – what states have laws written specifically against flashing your lights?

  • EricC

    I did fight it. It was dismissed, and my attorney is the one that filed the suit…

  • dj

    I don’t know if what the cop did was legal or not, but I’m also not sure why there is all this support for speeders. When one of them kills/maims someone in your family, get back on this forum and explain why it was OK and within their right to speed, and why you want them to not get a ticket. Sometimes, it takes hitting people in their purse to get them to stop bad behavior, or possibly, suspending their license to drive. In fact, speeders cause all of our costs go up through the accidents, damage and destruction that they cause. You OK with that?

  • ericc

    DJ, there isn’t support for speeders. There IS support for free speech, and AGAINST the police making up bogus charges, stopping drivers without cause, and continuing to operate knowing that what they’re doing is illegal.

    The idea that speeding is OK, is a red Herring. A motorist has the right to communicate with other motorists without the need for some special consent from government. Whether I’m warning drivers of debris in the road, that someone is driving without headlights, or there is a snake in the grass, is none of governments business. The fact that a cop gets pissed off, is, quite frankly, not my problem either.

    If he comes after me and makes up a charge HE KNOWS (or should know) is invalid, he is breaking the law. Consider this… had he found 20 lbs of cocaine in my car (there wasn’t any), the ENTIRE “bust” would have been inadmissible since the initial traffic stop was illegal. And thats the way it SHOULD be. That does not mean I’m in favor of drug trafficking. What it means is I am in favor of the constitutional protections we should all demand be respected.

  • Matt

    DJ- I guess it depends on how you define speeding. Most people define it as going above the posted speed limit. However, many of those limits are at least 10-15MPH below the maximum safe limit on the road.

    The problem is that most accidents are not caused by going 10-15 above the posted speed limit- but by either other causes (reckless driving usually) or if its related to speeding, its utterly excessive (30MPH or more).

    In either case, cracking down on speeding doesn’t stop those people- and it only takes money out of safe drivers.

  • Law

    What “one-way” narrow thinking. Most equiptment on vehicles are placed there as emergency devices. Yes, in many states unecessarily using a horn is illegal, unless it is to alert someone of a unsafe situation. Quickly turning off and on is not illegal, it is usually to inform other drivers to turn on their lights. Flashing brights, into the eyes of other drivers causes a temporary “night blindness”. The other driver is not able to see where he/she is driving.
    So quit your bitching and crying, read your driving manual and learn the laws.

  • Jay


    All speed limits are arbitrarily selected. It makes more sense to penalize someone when they cause an accident, as that is the one time where doing so does not involve a capricious application of law. It solves the problem just the same as people will drive the speed at which they are comfortable knowing they are fully liable for damages caused.

  • @DJ,

    Because speed doesn’t kill. Dangerous behaviors on the road are tailgating, swerving, agressive lanechanging, driving too fast for conditions, impeding the flow of traffic. These are very rarely ticketed. Instead, there is a plethora of fiscal punishments for exceeding an arbitrary limit on velocity.

  • trd


    Speed doesn’t kill. Its the sudden impact decceleration that does.

  • Guy Browning

    How do I get in contact with either Mr. Campbell or the law firm doing the law suit as I was a victim also on a two lane city street no where near a highway but was being monitored by FHP.

  • EricC

    Here’s the attorney handling the case:

    Marc Jones, Esquire
    30 Windsormere Way, Suite 200
    Oviedo, FL 32765
    (O) 407-359-9900
    (F) 407-359-9934