The ticketing, at Duke Street and S. Walker, near Landmark Mall, made him and others in the party miss the burial of his great-grandmother, according to a story reported by WTOP.
Apparently, if the funeral procession is led by police, the cars can run a red light. This particular procession was led by a funeral home and not police.
A USA Today story, written several years ago, says the police-led funeral procession is becoming a thing of the past due to staff shortages and liability concerns. Some police departments charge for the service, while some don't. Some funeral homes hire private security firms; some states allow private security firms to hold traffic and run red lights while others do not. The practice is all over the map.
WTOP asked Fairfax County Police about it. Here's what they said: If a procession is led by anything other than a police vehicle in Virginia, the procession must follow all traffic laws.
A Fairfax County officer said stopping someone in a funeral procession, like the Alexandria police officer did, is bad form, but confirmed that without an officer controlling the intersection, drivers in a procession must obey the rules of the road.
Alexandria police say their investigation into the incident is ongoing.