Facebook Post Leads To Police Ticket

An important lesson to be careful about what you post on Facebook and other public sites. One local man ended up getting a ticket after a video he posted on Facebook was viewed by police.

Michael Dalton told 11 News he loves making Facebook videos in his free time.

"On a whim I say, 'Hey I'll do a quick recording.' I found this new little shortcut if you don't want to go across the highway," said Dalton.

He recorded a short video showing him cutting through the parking lot of the Trail Ridge Apartment Complex that sits in between his neighborhood and a shopping center.

He uploaded that video to Facebook and shared it with a Woodland Park Community Page where it got a lot of attention.

"People getting upset at me because it was showing through the parking lot on private property. It's just this, that and the other," Dalton said.

Around a week later, he was visited by a Woodland Park police officer at his house and he recorded it. She had a ticket for reckless driving and running a stop sign.

"You're writing me for the stop sign based on my video?" Dalton is heard asking the officer on the recording.

The officer responds, "Yep."

11 News sat down with Woodland Park police to see how something posted on social media could end up as a ticket.

"We've seen stuff on Facebook before that has led to different things, but this is the first time that I'm aware of that we've given a ticket for it," said Sgt. Andy Leibbrand with the Woodland Park Police Department.

Police say the video shows Dalton running a stop sign that leads onto Sheridan Avenue.

"Is this where we're at? Can they use videos from Facebook to give me traffic violations? Can they do that to everybody?" Dalton asked.

Leibbrand said when someone puts something on Facebook for all of the public to see, officers can definitely take action if they need to.

"You have a First Amendment right to post whatever you want, and can. But if you're breaking the law and it's in our jurisdiction, then we can do something about it," Leibbrand said.

Dalton told 11 News he plans on fighting the ticket.

Police said stop signs that lead out of private property and onto a city street need to be followed and carry the same consequences as running any other stop sign.

Dalton was also cited for harassment and trespassing due to a separate incident at that same apartment complex mentioned in his video.