NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Gallatin Police arrest a man with a small arsenal of weapons in his convertible.
Police say, witness, report the man acting suspiciously outside a Dollar General store.
The suspect Charles Martin Johnson has a long criminal history, and police now have concerns about the man’s intentions.
It happened September 5 at the Dollar General Store on Hartsville Pike.
That’s where Gallatin Police officer Justin Cummins finds Charles Johnson asleep inside his running car.
Witnesses tell the police, the 45-year-old man acting suspiciously, possibly inebriated, after entering the dollar general 2 times and not buying anything.
On body cam, you can hear the officer wake the sleeping man and then ask him several questions to make sure he is ok.
While talking to the man in the open convertible, officer Justin Cummins sees an AR 15 pistol hanging from the passenger seat headrest.
While EMS attends to Johnson, the officer secures the loaded weapon.
A short time later, the 45-year-old is arrested, placed in the back of the squad car.
Officer Cummins asks, “I saw your AR 15 and Machete and I wanted to make secure that I would secure them and make sure you weren’t going to use that on us.”
Charles Johnson responds, “No. Of course not. I was complete…I have stuff that the FBI needs to see sir.”
Inside the small convertible, officers found several weapons, including an AR 15 pistol. A Glock 17 9mm. 8 loaded magazines with more than 160 rounds. A machete. Multiple knives. A hammer. Brass knuckles.
2 dozen cell phones. And pot.
Chief Don Bandy says Mr. Johnson’s intent is still unknown.
“He made some statements that concerned us and we contacted some other agencies because of it.”
News 2 has learned that one of those agencies is the FBI.
News 2 has also run a criminal background check on Johnson. According to the TBI, he has an extensive criminal history dating back to 2001.
In July of this year, Sumner County busted Johnson for possession of meth.
In 2018 metro charged Johnson with a number of felonies, including robbery, kidnapping, and impersonating a law enforcement officer.
According to the TN Department of Commerce and Insurance,
Johnson has a valid Tennessee armed security guard license that was issued in June of 2018 and is valid until June 2020.
Chief Don Bandy tells news 2, he’s concerned that a man with a checkered past was able to roam free on bond with a lot of firepower.
Chief says, “I’m all about the right to carry firearms, I believe in it 110% but this guy has issues,
he has issues with narcotics, and issues with violent tendencies and all I ask is that we put some stipulations on he couldn’t carry any weapons, or until his court date, and if he is found not guilty, we give them back.”
Johnson is in the Sumner County jail under a $50,000 bond. He’s doing back in court on these charges November 5th.
News 2 asked metro judge Mark Fishburn why Charles Johnson was not placed on any bond conditions governing weapons
The judge released this statement:
I cannot comment other than to say defendants have a constitutional right to a bond. If a bond made, then the person is required to follow the law or is subject to bond revocation which is initiated by the prosecution. I do not make rulings allowing persons charged with a crime to possess guns. “
We’re still waiting on the dept of commerce and insurance to comment on why Johnson’s armed security license is still valid.