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Knox County man checking out a new truck gets arrested for having a gun as a felon

From WRIL The Big One -

Arthur Vaugn - BCDC

Early Saturday morning at 3:55am July 15th, Middlesboro Sgt. Nick Capps was on routine patrol around Tractor Supply on Highway 25E when he noticed a silver Saturn SUV turn on it's headlights and leave from the second lot of Tim Short Dodge. The sergeant saw the SUV turning south onto the highway then into the main lot of the dealership. The vehicle parked, a male individual exited, and he began looking at a new truck.


Sgt. Capps followed in a short time afterward coming in contact with 39-year-old Arthur Vaugn of Cannon, Ky. Vaugn told the sergeant several times of his interest in the new truck and how he borrowed the Saturn from a family member to look at vehicles at the dealership.


Sgt. Capps tells WRIL that once coming in contact with Vaugn, he conducted a "casual encounter" with the man who agreed to speak the officer.


Vaugn was asked for his identification as well as if he had anything illegal on him. He stated that he had a firearm and ammunition in his possession. Sgt. Capps retrieved a Ruger LCP 9mm handgun with a full magazine and an extra magazine from his pants pockets.


A background check through Middlesboro Dispatch determined that Vaugn was a convicted felon.


He was arrested and lodged in the Bell County detention center charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.


Publishers note regarding police interactions "Casual and Formal Encounters"

A casual encounter is not a seizure—you are free to stop the conversation and leave at any time.

A formal encounter is a seizure.

Casual encounters typically consist of an officer walking up to you in a public place and starting a conversation with you. The courts have held that police officers do not need a “legal” reason to approach a person in public and strike up a conversation.


Police officers typically use these informal conversations to get more information to reach the legal levels of proof of reasonable suspicion or probable cause that a crime has occurred or is occurring.



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