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No Taillights Leads To Drug Arrest
Updated May 5, 2013 1:07 AM | Filed under: WBIW News
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(BLOOMFIELD) - Non-working taillights led to the arrest and more legal problems for a rural Solsberry man.

Nick Schneider, of the Greene County Daily World, reports an initial hearing was conducted by video link from the Greene County Jail on Friday morning for Andrew L. Rippy, 25, on a charge of possession of a controlled substance -- a class D felony.

Charges were approved Wednesday in Greene Superior Court following his arrest April 30 by Greene County Sheriff's Department Deputy Bobby Pierce.

Superior Court Judge Dena Martin appointed Greene County Public Defender Alan Baughman as his legal counsel. A pre-trial conference was set for 2:30 p.m. on June 18.
Pierce was patrolling State Road 43 on April 30 at about 9:05 a.m. when he noticed Rippy's Chevrolet truck and noticed the taillights were not working, according to the probable cause affidavit filed in the case.

After the traffic stop, Pierce wanted to see the vehicle's registration, proof of insurance and Rippy's driver's license.

Rippy told the officer he did not have an operator's license in his possession, but he was legal to drive. A computer check by the sheriff's department's dispatch center confirmed that Rippy was a legal driver.

Rippy was unable to locate a registration certificate or proof of insurance for the truck, which he said was owned by his father.

Rippy was informed that without a proof of insurance, the vehicle would have to be towed.

GCDW Deputy Jeremy Inman arrived on the scene to assist with the traffic stop.
Pierce then asked Rippy if he and Inman could help look in the vehicle for insurance and registration paperwork.

Rippy initially agreed to the search, then called his dad on a cellphone. After the call, he informed officers he did not want the vehicle searched because it was not his.
It was agreed that Pierce was going to give Rippy a ride home, while the vehicle was going to be towed.

Following the department's Standard Operating Procedures, prior to the tow, the vehicle's contents were inventoried.

While doing the inventory, a wallet was located in the driver's seat of the truck. Inman noticed a clear cellophane wrapper containing white rectangle shaped pills that were later identified by Laura Smith of the Indiana Poison Center as methadone - a schedule II controlled substance, according to the probable cause affidavit.

Rippy, who was already on probation for an earlier case where he was also charged with possession of controlled substance, then refused to talk to police about the drug find without being in the presence of a lawyer.



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