PORTLAND, Tenn. (WKRN) — Portland police made a routine traffic stop that ended up taking a dangerous career criminal off the streets.
It all went down Thursday, Jan. 20, just before 9 p.m. That’s when Portland Officer Derek Fondren noticed a car with illegal window tint.
The officer pulled over the Impala. Then, what started as a normal traffic stop, soon evolved into much more.
“It’s just a good example of great proactive police work, just a simple traffic stop,” said Chief Jason Williams.
Officers searched the car and found narcotics in a mason jar, which included marijuana and cocaine.
Officers also seized 400 Xanax pills that could be a lot more than Xanax.
“A lot of these Xanax pills turn out to be Fentanyl,” said Portland police Lt. Jason Arnold. “They are really pressed pills that are really Fentanyl not Xanax.”
The man behind the wheel was identified as Maurice Dalton.
Department of Corrections records reveal that the 47-year-old is a dangerous career criminal who has been repeatedly arrested for drugs, weapons and violence.
According to DOC records, Dalton was sentenced to 22 years in prison for attempted homicide in 1995 and another homicide in 2010. The 2010 charges were later reduced.
Records show Dalton was released in September 2020.
“Obviously our goal is to make our community a safer place to live and when our officers get out here and get drugs, and illegal guns and dangerous people off the streets that is the end result,” said Chief Williams.
A search of the car also turned up a loaded 9 mm handgun that no convicted felon is allowed to have. Investigators are looking into whether the gun might be stolen.
“That’s satisfaction,” Williams said. “Because someone is riding around with that stuff and they are up to no good.”
According to Williams, many good things in law enforcement begin with a “good old-fashioned traffic stop.”
“We solve burglaries by making traffic stops. Cases like this begin with traffic stops. Sometimes you intervene in domestics by making traffic stops. Human trafficking cases too,” Chief Williams said. “The key is to look past the simple traffic stop and be alert enough to know when something else is going on.”
Dalton is in the Sumner County Jail charged with a number of drug felonies as well as possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
His bond is set at $160,000.