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Trooper who gave lawmaker a break is fired

March 28, 2013 at 7:05 PM

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., March 28 (UPI) -- A Florida state trooper who pulled over a state lawmaker for speeding and then cut him a break by citing him only for lack of proof of insurance has been fired.

Rep. Charles McBurney, a Jacksonville Republican, says he was not going as fast as Trooper Charles Swindle said, The Miami Herald reported Wednesday. Swindle said he used a radar gun Nov. 19 to clock McBurney at 87 mph in a 70 mph zone but McBurney said the cruise control on his car was set at 75.

The trooper apparently never asked to see McBurney's insurance card, the report said.

McBurney complained to the head of the Florida Highway Patrol about the stop but he said he does not want special treatment either way.

Swindle's lawyer said the highway patrol has a longstanding practice of cutting legislators some slack because lawmakers set the agency's budget. He said trainees at the academy are told, "Don't bite the hand that feeds you."

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