New Hampshire cops accompanied by a member of the SWAT team escorted a Marine Corps veteran out of city hall last Monday after he attempted to pay a parking ticket with pennies.
Manchester police not only violated the Coinage Act of 1965 that states all coins are legal tender for debts by escorting Billy Spaulding out of city hall, they violated his friend’s First Amendment rights by claiming he needed their permission to record the interaction.
Spaulding knew they were well within the law, but ultimately obeyed police as they escorted he and his friend out of city hall on March 27.
Spaulding, who spent eight years in the Marines, was also open carrying a pistol that day, which is legal, but thankfully, police respected that law.
Then, on March 31, after speaking to Manchester police and pointing out the law, Spaulding was permitted to pay his $75 ticket for parking next to a fire hydrant at the Manchester City Hall.
Spaulding paid his ticket on Friday, but found himself at the police department later that day to complain after the mother of a Manchester police officer who began trolling his Facebook page by calling him a “dumbass” and telling the veteran her son is a hero.
“You call yourself a Marine….please,” wrote Kelley Catanzaro, the mother of Manchester cop Ryan Hardy.
Ryan Hardy was not present during either interaction Spaulding had with police while attempting to pay his fine, but his mother felt the need to troll his Facebook page anyway.
Spaulding, who has a legal license to carry a firearm, told PINAC he was forced to walk through a metal detector Friday after he opted to refuse a search by police at the Manchester police station, where New Hampshire law specifies it’s not legal to open carry.
After being told he could not record during the first attempt to pay, Spaulding’s friend recorded the entire interaction of Spaulding paying his fine in pennies while open carrying.
“Part II, they didn’t except it the first time. I went down to the Manchester Police Department. They said they have to take it,” Spaulding says. “The parking coordinator is not going to like me. But the law is the law.”
Video of the first interaction was cut short due to police telling Spaulding’s friend he could not record at city hall .
PINAC will update the story upon receiving the entire video, which Spaulding has requested.
Footage of Spaulding paying the fine is included below.