Woman asked to provide weight, Social Security number during traffic stop in Baytown

BAYTOWN, Texas - A routine traffic stop in Baytown turned out to be anything but for a woman.

Crystall Menard was driving Tuesday morning near West Baker Road and Bayway Drive in Baytown when a police officer pulled her over. She said he asked her for information that she did not expect.

"When he came back, he said, ‘I need your Social Security, your occupation and your weight,’ and I said, 'My Social and my weight?’  He said ‘Yes.’  I said, ‘I’ve never heard of that,’" Menard said.

Not wanting to cause problems, she said she provided her Social Security number and weight, both of which were blank on the written warning that she got from the officer. 

"I said, ‘What does that have to do with a ticket?’  He said, ‘Well, I’ve been around for about 52 years, and as long as I’ve been around, we've always had to provide it.’  I said, ‘I’ve never heard of that,’" Menard said.

A spokesman for the Baytown Police Department said questions about weight and Social Security numbers are standard, legal, identifying information. 

However, he said, a driver does not legally have to give those two pieces of information.  He said the only information required is a name, date of birth and address.   

Attorney Chris Downey said it is legal not to provide certain information to police, even if requested.

"Normally that's name and date of birth.  I must admit, I'm not quite sure why a police officer would need a SSN or weight for the fixing of that identity," Downey said.

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