Florida appeals court calls car stereo loud music law unconstitutional

LAKELAND — A state law making it illegal to blast loud music or other audio from a car stereo system has been declared unconstitutional.

A three-judge panel of the Second District Court of Appeal in Lakeland ruled on Wednesday in a pair of Pinellas County cases. Both motorists were cited for playing their car radios too loudly.

The judges found the law is an unconstitutional suppression of free speech because it arbitrarily exempts vehicles used for business or political purposes.

They also ruled a provision making it illegal for sound to be "plainly audible" from 25 feet or more away from a vehicle was unconstitutionally vague.

The panel, though, agreed to certify the vagueness issue to the Florida Supreme Court for further review as a question of great public importance.

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