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Tennessee Man Caught At a Traffic Stop With Illegal Automatic Weapons


Johnson City, Tennessee authorities were conducting what they believed to be a routine traffic stop for speeding, but instead found a man travelling with illegal automatic weapons and nearly a thousand rounds of ammunition. 

Deputies had stopped Scott Edmisten, 43, of Johnson City traveling with a loaded .45-caliber semi-automatic, a .223-caliber fully automatic assault rifle, a .308-caliber fully automatic assault rifle, a .357-caliber Magnum, as well as 900 rounds of ammunition and survival gear. 

All of this information was released to the press from Washington County Sheriff Ed Graybeal, who in addition, said the AR rifles in Edmisten's possession appeared to be modified to be automatic.  

He also stated that Edmisten had threatened his arresting officer in addition to lunging at investigators during questioning. He is currently in jail without bond on the charges of possession of prohibited firearms, speeding, and felony evading arrest.

Graybeal is reportedly in communication with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms assist in the investigation, due in part to the fact that the firearms weren't registered and did not have serial numbers. 

ATF spokesman Michael Knight told CBS News that authorities are still investigating why and how Edmisten came into possession of such a massive amount of firepower.

"Our priority is reducing violent crime on the front end, so that's the other thing we're looking at, along with motive: Were these items going to be used for a criminal act or were they just being transported from one area to another area?" said Knight. 

Similar to Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock, Edmisten was known to be particularly unassuming and was described as "quiet" and "friendly" by neighbors. Edmisten had been initially stopped for going 55 mph in a 30-mile-an-hour zone. Deputies reported that he first sped up to 80 mph, but stopped a half a mile down the road. 

What makes this case even more unsettling is that Edmisten, much like Paddock, was able to acquire these weapons despite state and federal gun laws. 

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