back to article Bloke named 'human' demands 'COPSLIE' licence plate

A man named "human" rolled up at New Hampshire Supreme Court last week to argue his right to sport the vanity licence plate "COPSLIE". The unemployed accountant - formerly known as David Montenegro - applied to the New Hampshire Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) for the provocative plate back in 2010, Reuters reports. Instead, …


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  1. tkioz

    I'm sorry but what kind of nutter changes his name to 'human' and what government agency let him?

    1. Ralph B
    2. DrXym Silver badge

      I don't know if this guy counts but it is reminiscent of people in America who proclaim themselves "sovereign citizens", change their name, trademark their name (and issue false liens for people who use them), avoid licence plates, and engage in lame tax dodging schemes. I thought this was just an American thing but the UK and Ireland have a similar movement called "Freemen of the land". Idiots have got to have a hobby I suppose.

      1. AndyS

        I've never heard of this - hilarious. Extract from Wikipedia:

        "Freemen believe ... a court is a place of business, and a summons is an invitation to discuss the matter at hand, with no powers to require attendance or compliance."

        Also, "this procedure has never been used successfully."

        1. joeW

          RationalWiki's article is also worth a read if you're looking for a giggle -

          I particularly recommend the section "Freeman Successes"

          1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

            "Freeman Successes"

            Very good.

  2. DougS Silver badge

    They saved the guy from himself

    I have to imagine driving around with that plate is going to get you stopped for every possible offense. Some of the reasons may even prove his plate true, for all the good it'll do him if he tries to contest the ticket.

    1. Eddy Ito Silver badge

      Re: They saved the guy from himself

      I imagine that is what he was going for along with the likely video evidence he would wind up bringing to the police harassment suit. Truth be told, he could probably make quite a bit of cash before the plods caught on and might even get restraining orders against some individual officers. It seems pretty well thought out considering the alternate plate so we know he was spoiling for a fight. By denying his first choice the DMV played into the trap so he can get some extra publicity and perhaps harassed by cops who really have no sense of self control and are offended by learning of the request.

  3. Khaptain Silver badge


    Some alternatives that might let him win a darwinian award.





    I have always considered personal plates as being in the same line as Go Faster Stripes, or furry dice....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Alternatives

      And Fail alert!

      The guy isnt inciting hatred against the police with his vanity plate as he isnt asking anyone to hurt them, neither is he insulting any one peace officer directly.

      He is mearly stating what should by now be considered a fact that cops lie. Given revelations here in the UK about things like hillsborough & plebgate, how anyone can think cops tell the whole truth & nothing but the truth is nothing short of a miracle.

      Whatever happened to 'I disagree with what you are saying, but i defend to the death your right to say it' ??

      Or are the police so fragile that they cant take any criticism of them or anyone speaking out against them?

      1. Khaptain Silver badge

        Re: Alternatives

        There is just so much wrong with that last reply.

        Your AC status says quite a lot about how much "critisicm" you are willing to take here.

      2. Lamont Cranston

        Re: 'I disagree with what you are saying, but i defend to the death your right to say it'

        I'd be all for the right to free speech, if people weren't so insistent on exercising that right. Maybe the "right to free speech" should be paired with the "responsibility to shut up"?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    WTF ... when I was living in California in the late 90s there was a case there were someone had the number plate RAPNJAP (chosen because RAP and JAP were his and his wife's initials). However someone reported this to the DMV claiming that "JAP" was a degrading term for Japanese people and as a result this number plate contravened various "hate speech" rules. Result was DMV cancelled the number plate along with all others that contained "JAP" as a substring. WTF indeed

    1. cortland

      The California DMV helpfully inserted spaces on my Amateur Radio plates to rid it of a forbidden number/letter combination. As a result, I was once detained by civilian law enforcement, and once held at gunpoint as a suspected terrorist (on a USAF base; I'm a retired soldier) when the person "running" the plate didn't see or know about 1) the category for radio license plates and/or 2) the spaces inserted.

      Everyone needs a little excitement once in a while. I told the folks on the Air Force base, I proposed to leave the shortwave radio at home next visit -- and wear a turban.

      1. BuckeyeB

        More details please. Is it possible to post your plate for our amusement?

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      WTF indeed

      Shrug. Personalized plates are a profit center for the State. That profit could be eaten up quickly if they ended up defending themselves in court from residents who decided they were offended by someone's choice of plate - regardless of whether said plaintiff had any chance of convincing a judge or jury that the plate was offensive. People willing to sue over being denied a particular plate appear to be much rarer. And in many, perhaps most, cases, people who are denied one particular personalized plate will try something else until they find one that's acceptable, so the State gets its money anyway.

      So the economic incentives strongly favor ridiculous restrictions.

      Personally, though I favor strong protection, and liberal interpretation, of freedom of expression, I don't think human has a winning argument here. There's nothing preventing him from putting a bumper sticker that says "COPSLIE" right above or below the plate, so it's hard to argue that there's any effective restraint here.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

  5. Martin-73 Silver badge

    I'd say let him have the plate

    His punishment would be continuous till he changed it.

  6. Suburban Inmate

    I'm glad they aren't so bitchy about that sort of stuff here in the UK. Me mum has a plate with her initials and WTF, and it's the car's original!

    1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      A few years ago, whilst driving in a South Yorkshire town, I saw evidence that the DVLA aren't too assiduous about checking plates - how would DO51 FKR have got through otherwise?

  7. Gert Leboski

    Now there's a name

    "New Hampshire Associate Attorney General Richard Head, representing the DMV"

    New Hampshire have a Dick Head in the position of Associate Attorney General?

    How's that working out for him and them, I wonder?

    1. Eddy Ito Silver badge

      Re: Now there's a name

      In my experience, so does every other State and the US DOJ. The difference is they aren't quite so up front about it name wise. On the bright side it means we know exactly who will be running for Congress in the next election.

    2. Peter Simpson 1

      Well, hello, Dick!

      It's "Richard", thank you very much.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Making life complicated

    Wouldn't it be much easier for everyone if they had just more or less correlative numbers on the plate, like most of the civilised world (plus France) do?

    Plus, the usual problem of standing out:

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Making life complicated

      more or less correlative numbers

      What sort of numbers are "correlative"? Or, conversely, are not?

      I've never seen "correlative" used as an absolute before. Generally it indicates one entity relates to another somehow. (The hint is in the name.) But perhaps I'm not very civilized.

  9. attoman

    Cop Lie by Law and so do Attorneys

    In the U.S. cops can lie whenever they like and it is lawful if done as part of an investigation. Thus copslie is a truthful and lawful statement New Hampshire will lose in court and with any luck be heavily sanctioned.

    More disturbing is Lawyers lie both prosecutors and defense lawyers. Caught frequently judges condone this behavior by not bringing charges against the attorneys. This is reprehensible and suggests that an honest court and judge is a rare commodity in the U.S.

  10. skeptical i

    GR8GOVT + NH's motto "Live Free or Die" across the top of the plates


  11. BuckeyeB

    Sacrifice them to Zorkon the space god

    Can we just kill this guy, his lawyer, and any of his supporters. This *hat just wants to make a name for himself and cause trouble.

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