Two Indianapolis police officers have been sued by a woman who claims they were apparently offended by her bumper sticker.
Pamela Konchinsky was pulling her minivan into the Merchants Garage, a parking garage on South Meridian Street near her employer, on June 17 when, her lawsuit says, two IMPD officers pulled in behind her.
“She started to get out of her car to talk to them, but she was ordered to stay in her car,” says Kelly Eskew, staff attorney for the ACLU of Indiana, which is representing Konchinsky. “(One of the officers) told her ‘I pulled you over, because I don‘t like your bumper sticker,” which read ‘Unmarked Police Car.’
Konchinsky was not charged with a crime or given a citation, but she says she was admonished by the officer.
“The officer said ‘someone might think you are impersonating a police officer, or someone might shoot you who doesn‘t like the police,” Eskew says.
The lawsuit says the officer ordered her to remove the bumper sticker, which took roughly ten minutes, causing Konchinsky to be late for work.
The officers are not identified in the lawsuit because the Konchinsky and the ACLU are unsure of their identities.
But Eskew says regardless, they violated Konchinsky‘s 1st and 4th Amendment rights by pulling her over.
“It‘s just a humorous bumper sticker. They are sold online and many other places. It‘s not up to police officers to judge whether or not a bumper sticker is funny or appropriate.”
IMPD Lt. Chris Bailey says the department does not comment on pending lawsuits.