‘Truck nuts’ in litigious fire in South Carolina

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So-called “truck nuts” or “truck nutz,” fake bull testicles that are available for purchase in all colors of the rainbow (including with a chrome finish), are a common sight hanging on the ball hitches of pickup trucks the nation over, not to mention in humorous pictures of pickup owners sitting on their back bumpers directly above a pair.

A case originating in Bonneau, S.C. (population approximately 400), near Monck’s Corner, with 65-year-old Virginia Tice’s truck nuts today has some commentators suggesting free speech is at stake.

Tice was ticketed $445 for the nuts hanging from her pickup on July 5 by Bonneau Police Chief Franco Fuda, who’d seen her truck parked at a service station. Fuda cited state law prohibiting public displays on vehicles of “sexual acts, excretory functions, or parts of the human body” that are offensive.

Charleston law firm Savage and Savage is now representing Tice in a case both attorney Scott Bischoff and representatives of the plaintiffs near immediately requested to take directly to a jury. “We’ll let a jury decide whether this is really criminal behavior,” Bischoff told reporters from the Courthouse News Service and other outlets, adding: “I don’t want to take anything away from the importance of free speech, but this is really comical.”

Whether the “nuts” accurately represent the human anatomy is likely to be at issue, and many observers have sounded off in national and international media about the case since its beginnings. The latest report came yesterday from FoxNews.com, which noted an anecdotal uptick in nuts sales anytime “people talk about outlawing or banning them,” as Keith Dillard, owner of the Trick Trucks location in Lanham, Md., told the news outlet.

Another Trick Trucks representative, the assistant manager at the Waldorf, Md., location, made the observation that the controversy in South Carolina may be much ado about nothing, As he told Fox News, “I can’t see a piece of plastic being offensive, it’s not like you can’t see that along the road, there are farms all over.”

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The case is set to go to trial in September.

Find more from the Courthouse News Service and Fox News.