Collection of links to case law documents

Every legal battle against helmet laws which incorporate FMVSS 218 should begin with a review of US Code Title 49 Transportation. Chapter 301 is the pertinent chapter. Go to Chapter 301 to find information about the Congressional authority granted to the NHTSA in order to implement federal motor vehicle safety standards FMVSS, and who they apply to. Pardon the slang but "It ain't us!" It ain't consumers and motorists. Federal law only applies to those businesses which import, manufacturer, distribute, sell, and repair motor vehicles and motor vehicle safety equipment. Also, pay close attention to the section on preemption.

List of federal motor vehicle safety standards FMVSS

FMVSS 218 - Motorcycle helmet federal standard (applies to manufacturers per US CODE TITLE 49)

When going to court, there is a legality of best copy. If the prosecution tries to use a text document, that is NOT the best copy, and you might object in order to get the document thrown out. The best copy should be used. Through the internet, the best copy is the .pdf because it is how the document actually appears in the official government documents.

US Freedom Fighters -
Helmet Law Defense League -
Fifty States (laws and analysis - OUTDATED) -
Archived B.O.L.T. site -
Note: The site is outdated and cannot be updated per wishes of the late Richard Quigley.

CALIFORNIA - forum topic is the BOLT of California website, is the archived pages of BOLT of California. <<= USEFUL COLLECTION (archived - not current).

Comment: BOLT members and their freedom fighter friends in California have done a great job of fighting helmet tickets. They almost always win when they go to court. Three people have over 80 wins each.

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Adults with good medical insurance can decide for themselves. Forcing a medical insurance requirement onto motorcyclists when there is no similar requirement for other motorists is discrimination. The 'property seizure 'through legal methods industry' in Florida controls millions, perhaps billions, in assets, and is now trying to go after motorcycles.

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To my knowledge, Michigan has previously had some court cases won. Currently, two BOLT members are currently fighting helmet tickets. Perhaps they will provide updates in the forum.

Nebraska has introduced a helmet law modification bill for 2009 which would provide exceptions for adults. The last repeal attempt came very close.

Nevada forum:
B.O.L.T. members, and others, in Nevada will be seeking a legislative repeal in 2009.

B.O.L.T. members in NC have been extremely active. From January 1, 2008 through January 1, 2009, we've had approximately 20 helmet law protests in different areas of the state. We are lacking talented organizers and active participants in the coastal areas, the Sandhills, and Charlotte. We are attacking this from all angles, involved politically, and are seeking a legislative repeal and judicial injunction.
Our chances of kicking the tar out of the helmet laws, and kicking the helmet laws out of the tarheal state in the MacKay case, and in the McAnally case are excellent, as long as we can get fair trials and are not intentionally bogged down by the politics which are deep inside the courts. Some judges in NC are very committed to the Constitution, while others are more committed to partisan politics of protecting people from themselves. The judges are not going to do us any favors - we will have to earn any fight we win.

Biker Court -
includes Ticket Information Tracking System TITS

2009 State of North Carolina v MacKay
Ticket issue date: April 27, 2008
Trial Date: Two Days in January, 2009
Legal Brief -
Lost in District Court. Appealed to Wake County Superior Court. 23 defense exhibits were admitted into evidence. After two days of bench trial, MacKay was found responsible even though the manufacturer testified he certified the helmet compliant with FMVSS 218. Judge Donald Stephens issued a 5 year PFJ. NO FINE OR COURT COST. Perhaps the judge knew MacKay would refuse to pay and would appeal to higher courts. Cost to prosecute one $25 helmet ticket is estimated at ~ $8000. Trooper drove from Surry and Yadkin counties several times, ~5 hour round trip. NC taxpayers should be outraged!

2009 State of North Carolina v Ron McAnally
Ticket issue date: ?? August, 2008 ??
Status: Ongoing
Trial Date: First appearance in Superior Court is in March, 2009
Ron has a legal brief similar to the one used by Jan.

    NC Cases under the old law prior to 2008:

2007 State of North Carolina v Terry Malpass
Terry won in district court. This was in 2007, prior to the implementation of the revision effective January 1, 2008. To our knowledge, this was the last win under the old helmet law prior to 2008.
Terry Malpass legal brief -

Fast Fred helmet brief under the old law -
Fred and others managed to get their cases dismissed.

2000 State of North Carolina v Barker
Case which went to NC Court of Appeals. According to Judge Wynn, probably would have been won due to vagueness if the defendants had worn anything on their heads. Helmets are not defined by state law, and the commisioner was not keeping a list of approved helmets.

South Carolina bikers have been able to beat down legislative attempts through large protest actions in the 80's followed up with annual pilgrimages to the Statehouse.
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Myrtle Beach SC.
In 2009, expect serious protest actions and legal battles arising from newly introduced Myrtle Beach city regulations which were put in place in 2008. Expect pre-emption arguments to win the day, but it might require appeals to the SC Superior Courts. Also, court case winners will be mindful of the city's true intent: kick blacks out of Myrtle Beach during Myrtle Beach Black Bike Week. There is a well-documented history that this is the true reason why MB has chosen to discriminate against all bikers.
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Many years ago, Wisconsin bikers proved themselves and beat down legislative attempts to introduce helmet laws through a series of protests 30,000 strong.