SUMNER COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — Driving way too slow gets an ex-con a quick ride to the Sumner County jail with close to a pound of pure fentanyl.
The man got pulled over for something called the “Slow Poke Law,” that’s when you hang out in the fast lane driving slowly never pulling over for other cars.
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Tuesday morning a drug interdiction agent with the 18th Judicial Drug Task Force stopped a rental vehicle on I-65 North. The SUV was coming from Alabama and heading to Indiana.
Eric Johnson, 38, was behind the wheel. The officer is heard interacting with Johnson on bodycam.
Officer: “Anything illegal in the vehicle?”
Officer: “You just started crying on me man.”
Johnson: “No, it was the wind.”
Officer: “I gotcha, okay.”
The officer got the 38-year-old out of the car after detecting the strong odor of marijuana, which was actually scattered all around the rental car.
Officer: “The car does smell like weed, okay?”
Johnson: “It can’t smell like weed, I don’t smoke weed.”
Officer: “I gotcha.”
A check of the car revealed close to a pound of pure fentanyl found in an aluminum bag hidden in a bag of clothes. Some of the fentanyl was pink, some white, but drug agents said all of it is pure.
“Put your hands behind your back,” the officer is heard saying on bodycam.
Johnson told officers he had no prior arrests—but officers told News 2 that’s not true. According to officials, Johnson currently had outstanding arrest warrants in other states
“He currently has outstanding arrest warrants in other states, Ohio, I believe, for failure to appear on previous narcotic charges, and as well, arrested in 2012 for murder in Alabama. I know that he was arrested for murder…and here he is back on the streets trafficking one of the deadliest synthetic opioids on the market,” a drug agent told News 2.
Once in the back of the squad car, officers allowed the ex-con to call a family member. A dejected Johnson told them he is going back to jail.
“It’s not the bust of the century, but one I am proud of,” the drug agent said. “376 grams might not seem like a terribly lot of narcotics, but when you are talking about fentanyl it is.”
Eric Johnson is currently in the Sumner County jail on drug charges and he also was charged with the Slow Poke violation. His bond is $250,000.