Routine traffic stop in Southside sends man to jail


A routine traffic stop by Independence County Sheriff’s Deputy Bret Ward soon turned into a rather large drug bust.

According to the incident report, Ward pulled over a Chevrolet pickup truck on Jan. 7 because it was crossing over the double yellow line on Newport Road, near The Southside Grill.

While Ward was in the process of checking out the driver’s license of the suspect — identified as Rodney Monroe Lee, 42, of Independence County — via dispatch, the report said agents from the 16th Judicial District’s Drug Force arrived on the scene and informed Ward that Lee might be in possession of methamphetamine.

Ward and the drug unit officers made a search of Lee and his truck because the suspect was a parolee with a search waiver on file, the report said. After the search, the authorities found two ounces of methamphetamine and almost $6,300 in cash, according to the incident report.

Lee was taken to the Independence County Detention Facility where he was placed on a probable cause hold for the drug task force.

Lee’s pickup truck, meth, and cash were seized at the scene by the drug task force agents.

He is expected to be charged with one felony, possession of a controlled substance, namely meth.

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