WASHINGTON COUNTY, Utah (ABC4) – A Washington County police officer found approximately 40 pounds of methamphetamine in the back of a white pickup truck on Tuesday, April 12.

While sitting on I-15 at mile marker 8, the officer noticed a white pickup, which was not speeding, slow down as it passed his patrol car.

He began to follow the truck, and while doing so, observed a traffic violation as the truck drifted out of the lane.

While conducting a stop, the officer told the driver, 46-year-old John Thomas Vinson, that he would be issuing him a written warning for the violation, and requested he sit in the front seat of the patrol car as the citation was issued.

The officer also noticed a black pistol in between the passenger seat and center console, which Vinson said he kept for personal protection.

During casual conversation, the officer noticed “several discrepancies” in Vinson’s travel story, and requested consent to search his vehicle, to which Vinson agreed.

Upon searching the truck, the officer found a second pistol in the glove box before looking in the back cab area.

The officer then found “two large objects” on the floorboard that were wrapped in brown packaging tape. He grabbed the objects and was able to feel the texture of the substance, which he found to be consistent with methamphetamine.

The officer then placed Vinson under arrest, who initially claimed that the objects were just “sandbags,” before admitting that they were narcotics.

After cutting the package open, another officer observed both packages to be a white, crystal-like substance consistent with methamphetamine.

Vinson, who lives in Colorado, told the arresting officer that he was paid $3,000 dollars to travel to California to pick up the narcotics. He admitted that he knew that it was narcotics, but that he did not have any clue what type of narcotics it was.

Vinson has been booked into Purgatory Correctional Facility and faces two counts of use of a firearm by a restricted person as well as one count of possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance.