Two men argued in the backseat of a Tennessee Highway Patrol cruiser over which one was going to take the charges for the entire duration of a Friday afternoon traffic stop.  That’s according to a report from THP Trooper James Raines.

When a white 2002 Pontiac Grand AM failed to stay in its lane as it rounded the curve of South Indiana Avenue onto East Hemlock Street in La Follette, it caught the trooper’s eye.  Trooper Raines pulled the car over on South 4th Street at Sharps Circle after also noticing the level of darkness of the car’s window tint and that the car tag was expired.

Raines soon learned that the driver of the car, 45-year old Brian Todd Phipps of Lake City, could not provide proof of insurance or registration.  Phipps’, as outlined in the trooper’s report, driver’s license was suspended.

Phipps and his passenger, 28-year old Michael Winstead Lawson of Briceville, both shirtless, appeared very nervous to Raines as he noticed a white powder in Phipps right nostril.  The trooper pointed out that Phipps eyes were extremely bloodshot and watery, and that Phipps performed very poorly in a field sobriety test.

While searching the car, Raines found what is believed to be meth and Promethazine along with a wooden pipe, a cut straw and seven syringes.  He adds that he smelled the odor of marijuana inside the car.  Both Phipps and Lawson denied ownership of the items.

Phipps, charged with DUI, refused a blood test.  Both men were arrested on multiple drug charges and taken to the Campbell County Jail.

Each man has since been released; Phipps to Anderson County authorities on a hold and Lawson on a $10,000 bond. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 10/10/2018-6AM)