A traffic stop for a non-working tail light has led to a 195-month federal prison sentence for a Bradley County man.
Charles Self was sentenced on Thursday by Judge Curtis Collier as an armed career criminal.
On Nov. 8, 2011, at 2:30 a.m., a Bradley County Sheriff's Office deputy pulled over a black SUV for the tail light problem. The vehicle was registered to Self's cousin, Regina Whiteside, who was driving.
The officer noticed a rifle case in the back seat and that Self, who was in the front passenger seat, had his hand in the back pocket of the driver's seat. When asked, he said he was only trying to retrieve Ms. Whiteside's purse. Self gave a false name and fake Social Security number.
Officers eventually searched the vehicle and found a rifle on the back seat and a pistol in the back pocket of the driver's seat where Self's hand had been. Police said the guns had been stolen earlier that evening from a vehicle parked at the Fairfield Inn on Westside Drive in Cleveland.
Self had several prior felonies so he qualified as an armed career criminal, which brings a heavy sentence in Federal Court.