A metro man wants to set the record straight after a traffic stop led to his arrest. Oklahoma City police identified him as a sovereign citizen, someone who does not recognize the government or laws.
Bryan Jackson, 40, was arrested last month for removing the VIN number from his SUV. Jackson claims to have a right to do so and is fighting his charge.
The traffic stop started when an officer noticed Jackson did not have a registered Oklahoma tag. He also told the officer he did not have car insurance or a driver's license.
Jackson explained why in the officer’s body camera video released last month.
“I don’t need a driver’s license to drive because that’s for people conducting commerce,” said Jackson. “The problem is they don’t tell ya’ll [sic] that and they don’t tell the citizens that.”
Jackson was arrested after officers discovered the VIN number was removed from his vehicle.
Officer: “If you operate it on city streets that’s governed by our law you have to follow the laws.”
Jackson said the law allows him to remove the identifying information.
“Again, when you look up the laws and statutes on having a VIN,” said Jackson. “If you are the owner of that property you can take the VIN off.”
After the arrest Jackson requested the officer's body camera video and said he was disturbed when he heard the officer call him a sovereign citizen.
Officer: “Can you start me another unit? I’ve got two sovereign citizens inside.”
Officer: “He’s just not wanting to give me his ID or anything like that. Said he doesn’t recognizes our government.”
Jackson said he never made that claim during the traffic stop and wants to clear his name.
“If you look up with sovereign citizens are,” said Jackson. “They’re something like terrorists towards the government and that’s not who I am or what I believe in.”
Jackson said he was respectful and plans to defend himself in court against the accusations.
“I’m willing to accept whatever they give me,” said Jackson. “Until I get my day in court.”
Jackson said he will represent himself in court this month on the VIN charge.