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Twice in the last four months, we've read the headlines and heard in the news stories of a man being arrested for walking down the street in Abilene, Texas. While walking down the street is not really a problem, the direction or better yet the side of the road he was walking on does make a big difference on whether or not you may get a ticket or be arrested.

Yes in Texas you can get a ticket or be arrested for walking down the wrong side of the road. I called the Abilene Police Department and spoke with one of the sergeants who informed me that it is not against the law to walk down the road however the side of the road you're walking may make a difference.

The Walking Pedestrian law is not a city ordinance but rather a state law that comes with a pretty hefty fine or jail time or both. It was interesting to learn that, every third grader that has ever been to Safety City is taught the pedestrian and bicycle laws.

Break the walking law and you could be fined up to $500 or arrested

Violation of a pedestrian or bicycle law is considered a Class C misdemeanor that is punishable with a fine of up to $500 and possibly jail time. And there is a vast and opposite difference between pedestrian and bicycle laws.

The pedestrian law simply states that walking on a road where no sidewalk is available the pedestrian must go against the flow of traffic to be able to see oncoming traffic. The Bicycle laws state that a cyclist must go with the flow of traffic. Funny thing is that I was completely surprised that it's a "State" law and these laws are taught to 3rd graders at Safety City in Abilene.

Back to Mr. Davis, according to the latest arrest report, Jon Davis was arrested for walking down the wrong side of 1st Street, and this wasn't the first time. Jon was arrested, in early May of 2022 for the very same thing. But walking down the street was not the only reason he was arrested.

Photo by: APD Booking
Photo by: APD Booking

Many motorists going driving on North or South first streets have called in reports of a man walking down the road and some said he was making gestures like he was going to jump out into traffic making.

So, if you are walking down the road because there is no sidewalk, remember to walk against the flow of traffic so you can see the vehicles coming in your direction.

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