A Virginia appellate court has ruled that the state's law against impersonating a police officer is constitutional, a ruling that countered the U.S. Supreme Court's June decision that lying about being a war hero is protected speech.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit issued a 2-1 ruling on Tuesday.
The ruling stemmed from a case brought by Douglas Chappell, who was stopped for speeding in October 2009 by a U.S. Park Police officer on the George Washington Memorial Parkway. Chappell told the officer he was a deputy with the Fairfax County (Va.) Sheriff's Office.
Chappell had argued the Virginia statute "criminalizes the behavior of adults who attend costume parties dressed as a police officer, children playing cops and robbers, and actors portraying law enforcement officials."
In his majority opinion, Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III called Chappell's argument ludicrous, reports the Wall Street Journal.