Nobody covers Brown County like The Democrat Buy PDF| Advertise| Contact Us
Hoosier Harvest Cookbook
Latest News
Town council upholds visitors' noise tickets
Updated on: 08.16.13

In June, the Nashville Town Council upheld a ticket to a local man for violating the noise ordinance with a car stereo.

Last night, the council upheld five of them issued to visitors for motorcycle noise -- the first known visitors to fight tickets under an updated ordinance.

The five men were riding in two separate groups of motorcycles through Nashville in July.

One, from Washington, Ind., was pulled over by the town marshal.

The other four, from Indianapolis, were pulled over by Nashville Reserve Officer Tomas Perez on a bicycle.

All were cited for revving the engine or “racking” the throttle and for having a modified exhaust system -- all of which are against the Nashville noise ordinance since an updated version was passed last fall.

Ernesto Morin Jr., one of four Indianapolis motorcycle club members who were cited in July, asked that the town council let them off with a warning.

He said he didn’t see any noise ordinance signs posted along State Road 135 when they visited. But on their way into town before the council meeting via State Road 46, he noticed one sign, obstructed by shrubbery.

Ryan Thomas, who rode his Harley in from Washington with a large group, said the same thing.

“I wish I was warned so I could tell the group to keep it down,” Thomas said. “We’ve all got carburetor motorcycles, so if our spark plugs foul out, it just happens.”

The officers testified that the riders from both groups were ticketed for purposely making noise they considered to be excessive, not simply for riding through town in a loud vehicle.

After the updated noise ordinance was passed, no more signs were posted in town, said Town Superintendent Roger Bush. But town council Vice President Charles “Buzz” King said mention of the noise ordinance was made in several biker magazines.

Another representative of the Indianapolis club said he’d already posted news of his Nashville noise ticket on the Internet. He claimed that a number of riders from motorcycle clubs said they’d also been ticketed here, suggesting that “it’s a profile thing.”

“We’re not against the bikes; we’re against the noise,” council member Jane Gore said.

Town Marshal Stephanie Hess reported that from April through mid-July, only 10 tickets have been issued in town, for vehicle noise or any other type.

“It’s not a huge thing that we’re writing out tickets,” council member Arthur Omberg said.

Both riders also said they were unaware that their motorcycles had illegal parts.

King, thumbing through a motorcycle accessories magazine, told both speakers that the after-market parts they said they had carried a warning that they are not EPA regulation noise-compliant, and to check local noise ordinances.

Morin said he planned to consult with a lawyer, with whom he’d already discussed the noise ticket. He asked how to appeal.

“Motorcycles put a lot of money in this town,” said one unidentified member of his group, as Morin guided him out of the room.

Thomas said he understood the need for an ordinance, but, he added, “if the bad news keeps getting around where everybody’s getting a noise ticket -- there’s probably 10,000 bikes here on a weekend. I know you guys are trying to put the law down, but maybe a few warnings out there first would help, because ... it's just kind of making me bitter, a little bit, to come back. Because, I mean, I’m not going to change my pipes.”

“We want to have Nashville a pleasant experience for all my guests," Omberg said. "We’re not trying to discourage any one particular group, because we can ill afford to isolate any particular group. That’s why in only four or five months, there have only been about 10-12 tickets written, and, like you said, there are hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of motorcycles that come down here."

-- Sara Clifford, Brown County Democrat

Writer's note: This story has been corrected. King did not state at the meeting that the town placed notices in biker magazines about the noise ordinance. His statement at the meeting was: "So you didn’t hear all the publicity about this when we did it? It was in all the biker magazines."

See Full List »

David O’Neal Williams, 75, Bloomington
  Father of Tony Williams of Nashville

Raymond M. Richardson, 83, Morgantown
  Father of Rob (Jennifer) Richardson of Brown County

Florence L. (Schonfeld) Cave, 76, Peoga
  Mother of Linda (Roger) Smith of Nashville

  • July 7
    6 p.m. Sycamore Valley Center, 746 Memorial Drive (fairgrounds)
  • July 7
    Open 12-step meeting in New Bellsville area
    8 p.m. Harmony Baptist Church, 3999 Mt. Liberty Road, New Bellesville
  • July 7
    Nashville Redevelopment Commission
    4:30 p.m. Town Hall, 200 Commercial St.
  • July 8
    Brown County Radio Hour to air Episode 40
    6 p.m. WFHB FM 91.3 and 100.7
  • July 8
    Jeff Foster at Hobnob restaurant
    6 to 8 p.m. Hobnob, 17 W. Main St.
  • July 8
    Washington Township Advisory Board
    7:15 p.m. BC (Nashville) Fire, 231 E. Main St.
  • July 9
    Go Club at the library
    3:30 to 5 p.m. Brown County Public Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • July 9
    Gospel jam & sing in Gnaw Bone
    6:30 p.m. Country Gospel Church, 5181 State Road 46 East
  • July 9
    Nashville Town Council
    6 p.m. Town Hall, 200 Commercial St.
  • July 9
    Nashville Arts & Entertainment Commission
    10 a.m. Town Hall, 200 Commercial St.
  • July 9
    Gospel hymn sing
    6:30 p.m. Green Vly Apostolic Church, 5124 State Road 46 West
  • July 9
    Rotary Club
    7:15 a.m. Artist Colony Inn, 105 S. Van Buren St.
  • July 9
    BC photography club
    7 to 9 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • July 9
    Volunteer Fair at The Seasons
    4:30 to 6 p.m., 6 p.m. The Seasons Lodge Conference Center, 560 State Road 46 East
  • July 10
    Farmers market in Bean Blossom July 10
    4 to 7 p.m. St. David's Episcopal Church, 11 State Road 45 at 135 North, Bean Blossom
  • July 10
    5 p.m. Fruitdale Fire Station, 5200 State Road 135 North, Bean Blossom
  • July 11
    6 p.m. Sycamore Valley Center, 746 Memorial Drive (fairgrounds)
  • July 11
    Free community breakfast at Sprunica church
    8 to 10 a.m. Sprunica Baptist Church, 3902 Sprunica Road
  • July 11
    Health fair at the YMCA
    8 a.m. to noon YMCA, 105 Willow St.
  • July 11
    Widowed group
    2:30 p.m. Sycamore Valley Community Center, 746 Memorial Drive at the fairgrounds
  • July 12
    Woods reunion slated
    12:30 p.m. Yellowwood Forest
  • July 13
    Backpack Program meeting slated
    7 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • July 13
    Beeline beekeepers club
    7 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • July 14
    Open 12-step meeting in New Bellsville area
    8 p.m. Harmony Baptist Church, 3999 Mt. Liberty Road, New Bellesville
  • July 14
    Peaceful Valley Heritage meeting
    6:30 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • July 14
    Brown County Council
    6 p.m. County Office Building, 201 N. Locust Lane
  • July 16
    WRAPS 20th anniversary open house
    6 to 8 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • July 17
    Groundbreaking slated for new senior apartments
    2 p.m. Hawthorn Hills, se corner of Hawthorne Drive & Chestnut Street
  • July 18
    Rock & mineral club
    6 p.m. Extension Office, 802 Memorial Drive at the fairgrounds
  • July 20
    Health department offers ServSafe class
    8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. County Office Building, 201 N. Locust Lane
  • July 30
    7 to 9 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane