An off-duty South Carolina police officer was in for a surprise this week after pulling over a female law student.

The incident began when the female driver passed and flipped off a vehicle that she says was impeding traffic by driving excessively slow in the fast lane.

The slow vehicle, which turned out to be an unmarked police car, immediately began tailgating the female driver and flashing its lights.

An off duty police officer, who was reportedly driving with a friend in the vehicle, approached the woman’s car in an attempt to issue a citation.

After being asked if he was on duty, the officer flashed a police badge and asserted, “We’re always on duty, mam.”

The female driver then began asking if she was being detained, utilizing her knowledge as a law student.

Despite repeated attempts to ignore the question, the officer eventually admitted that he did not have the authority to detain her, causing the woman to put her car in gear and begin leaving.

Angered by the rights afforded to the driver under the United States Constitution, the officer admitted defeat and left the vehicle.

In the original video’s YouTube description, the law student described the encounter in further detail.

“He pulled me over, not because he had reason to, but simply because he ‘could’ – this is evident by the first comment he made when he approached my car…” the description states. “While I have all the respect in the world for officers, and appreciate what they do for us on a daily basis, I will not tolerate abuse of power – and neither should you.”

The brief confrontation highlights how heavily one simple phrase can shift an unwarranted police stop.

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