According to a report from The Big One WRIL, Middlesboro Police Officer Jeremiah Johnson conducted a traffic stop at approximately 4:15 a.m. Sunday, New Year’s Day, at Highway 441.
The driver was 35-year-old William Fred Allen of Harrogate, Tennessee. According to the citation, Johnson pulled Allen over for the rear license plate on his 1997 two-door Jeep not being illuminated and because Allen was not wearing a seat belt.
Once Johnson made contact with Allen he reported that he observed a .38 caliber handgun lying on the passenger seat. Johnson then secured the weapon and after confirmation from Middlesboro Dispatch it was discovered that the firearm was allegedly stolen.
The report states that after securing Allen, Johnson searched his vehicle, allegedly finding a scale with residue and two bags with a clear rock-like substance believed to be methamphetamine hidden.
The citation also states that a metal collapsible baton was discovered in the driver’s side door compartment.
Allen was lodged in the Bell County Detention Center and charged with rear license not illuminated; failure to maintain insurance, first offense; failure to wear seat belt; carrying a concealed weapon (for the baton); receiving stolen property (firearm); first-degree trafficking in controlled substance, first offense (methamphetamine two grams or greater).
WRIL reports that the handgun belonged to a shop owner on 20th Street who told WRIL it was taken in a burglary two months ago. According to WRIL, the firearm has been returned to the rightful owner.