Bus driver accused of knife threat

2013-03-06T16:00:00Z 2013-03-30T17:07:10Z Bus driver accused of knife threatGazette Staff The Billings Gazette

The driver of a Tennessee charter bus on its way to Canada is accused of threatening a "disrespectful" Lockwood gas station clerk with a knife.

Philip Howell Hipsher, 53, of Nashville, Tenn., appeared in Yellowstone County Justice Court on Wednesday by video from the county jail. He is charged with felony assault with a weapon for an incident Tuesday at the Flying J truck stop on Old Hardin Road.

Judge Larry Herman set bond at $5,000 and ordered Hipsher to appear March 14 for arraignment in District Court.

According to court records, a Flying J clerk called 911 and told sheriff's deputies that a customer had become angry, pulled and knife and threatened to cut his throat.

The clerk told the deputies the man was driving a large silver bus that was just pulling onto Interstate 90 as they spoke.

A deputy stopped the bus and the driver, Hipsher, came out with his hands in the air "stating that he knew why he had been stopped," court records state.

Hipsher told the deputy he was heading to Canada to pick up a rock band and had stopped at the Flying J for fuel.

The charter bus company he works for requires three receipts, Hipsher said, and the clerk became "disrespectful and laughed at him" when he asked for a third receipt.

Hipsher "stated that he was stupid and lost focus for a moment" when he flashed the knife at the clerk.

Copyright 2014 The Billings Gazette. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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