A 56-year-old grandmother drove from Kentucky to New Jersey several times in order to fight a $56 traffic ticket over her so-called "Liberty Van."
Good news for the woman: She won.
Lynda Farley, whose van is emblazoned with flags, flowers, bumper stickers and political signs that say things like "Outdoor smoke bans are idiotic" and "Vote Marxists Out," was cited in New Jersey in September 2012 for driving a vehicle with an obstructed view. Specifically, the trooper told her the string of flowers bordering the front windshield of her 2004 Nissan Quest minivan obstructed her view of the road, according to the Express-Times.
Farley didn't agree. She fought the ticket tooth and nail, going so far as to drive her Liberty Van from Kentucky to New Jersey several times to protest the fine. All told, she drove over 5,000 miles and 100 hours during the course of the fight.
On Wednesday, Judge Ann Bartlett overturned the ticket, despite expressing concern about the vehicle's safety.
"Ms. Farley, I wouldn't want my grandchildren walking behind your car," she said, according to the Express-Times. However, the judge said, rules require only that drivers have full views out their front and side windows.
Of course, Farley has spent far more than $56 on fuel to fight the ticket, but she told the Express-Times she places a much higher value on her freedom to say (or drive) what she wants.
Via the Express-Times:
"If that isn't freedom of speech, we have no such thing," Farley said after the ruling. "Besides that, my heart and soul is in it and I will defend that to the death."
This isn't the first time Farley has fought for her right to drive what looks like a giant billboard. Her attorney, Randolph Norris, told the Express-Times that his client also successfully fought $3,000 worth of fines due to Christmas lights on her van.
- traffic ticket