Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Drug Charges Dismissed

A drug case that resulted from a traffic stop in Cookeville earlier this year has now been dismissed, but the District Attorney's office says they may take the evidence to a grand jury anyway. Charges against 24-year-old Doug Aaron Stinson of Cookeville, 30-year-old Derrick Lee Helms of Baxter, and 24-year-old Dustin Ryan Bilbrey of Cookeville were dismissed after a hearing in General Sessions court. The three had been charged with possession of methamphetamine for re-sale and promotion of meth manufacture after police say they found what was described as a "rolling meth lab" during a traffic stop. Police say the van containing the lab was initially stopped because one of the back seat passengers was not wearing a seatbelt. And lawyers for the men claim that state law does not require that back seat passengers wear seat belts, so there was no reason to stop the vehicle. The judge apparently agreed, but assistant D-A Beth Willis says she has a different view on the law.