Bodycam video of confrontation leading to arrests of Smith County Clerk, son

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Authorities have released body-worn camera footage of the incident that led to the arrest of the Smith County Clerk, her son and another man.

On March 28 around 9:45 p.m., deputies initiated a traffic stop on 28-year-old Cody Voss because his vehicle allegedly had no tail lights, and video shows that he did not pull over until he reached the Phillips’ residence.

According to officials, Derek Phillips, 36, was traveling in front of Voss. Once they reached the residence and Voss pulled over, authorities said that Derek Phillips started interfering with the traffic stop.

Soon after, his , Smith County Clerk Karen Phillips, 65, is seen coming out of the residence and started interfering as well, authorities said. Bodycam video appears to show Karen and Derek Phillips shouting at the deputies.

A deputy can be seen asking Derek to “get over here now” as Derek yelled from the garage. Derek is heard responding with, “No, you get over here then.” The deputy responses, “Okay, I will get over here then,” and approached Derek, who appears to run back into the home. Bodycam video appears to show Karen grabbing for the officer as he approached her son.

The scene continues inside the house, with Derek being arrested. A woman can be heard on the bodycam video yelling “You need to get out of my house” at authorities, who left the house with Derek and Cody in handcuffs.

Voss was arrested on charges of failure to identify and held on a $250 bond before being released the next day.

Derek Phillips was arrested on charges of evading arrest/detention, interfering with public duties and resisting arrest/search/transport and was held on a collective bond of $4,500 before posting bond.

Karen Phillips was charged with interfering with public duties on April 4 and was released after posting a $1,000 bond.

Smith County Sheriff’s Sgt. Larry Christian said this about the bodycam footage:

“Part of the events that occurred that night were posted to social media. The Sheriff released the bodycam and dashcam video so that the citizens could see the full, unedited version of what transpired during this traffic stop. Sheriff Larry Smith stands behind his deputies and the professional manner in which they handled this potentially volatile situation.”


The Smith County District Attorney’s office has been recused from the case due to the family’s connections to Smith County Commissioner Terry Phillips. In a letter, Smith County District Attorney Jacob Putman said that prosecuting the son and spouse of a current county commissioner would lead to legal conflicts of interest, especially if Terry Phillips was a witness to the events that happened on March 28.

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