Man charged with gun, meth possession in Minnesota

ST. PAUL — Ramsey County prosecutors charged a man Thursday who they say has white supremacist ties with possessing guns and methamphetamine.

Samuel Shoen, 35, faces three counts of possessing firearms after being convicted of a crime of violence, one count of possessing meth and one count of committing or trying to commit a crime while wearing or possessing a bulletproof vest.

The complaint said Shoen was affiliated with the Hammerskins, a white supremacist group, and also had ties from his time in prison to the Native Mob, an American Indian gang, according to the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

Earlier this month, an informant accompanied by an undercover officer bought a MAC-10 firearm from Shoen in the parking lot of a St. Paul restaurant, the complaint said. The gun turned out to have been reported stolen from West St. Paul in 2009.

Another informant met Shoen last Sunday and "agreed to visit his grow house in northern Minnesota," the complaint said. While Shoen was taking a shower at a McGregor motel, the informant took his car, drove it to the Twin Cities and turned it over to law enforcement. An AR-15 rifle and body armor were found inside, the complaint said.


Shoen returned to the Twin Cities on Tuesday and officers set up surveillance at a Walmart in Vadnais Heights because Shoen had been told his car was in the store parking lot.

Officers saw Shoen and two men in the parking lot and followed the car. When they tried to pull the vehicle over, a chase ensued and a Minnesota State Patrol squad car eventually forced the car from the highway and into the snow on Interstate 694 in Woodbury.

The three people in the car were arrested.

Before Shoen was arrested Tuesday, he told a friend that if police pulled them over, "he would shoot it out," the complaint said. Shoen was wearing a front and back ballistic-plate vest held together by twine and had a .40-caliber pistol magazine in his jacket pocket, the complaint said.

In the trunk, there was an AR-15 rifle, several loaded magazines and more than 1,200 rounds of ammunition. A pistol was on the front passenger seat floorboard, and an AR-15 optic laser sight was in the back seat with a receipt showing it was bought at Walmart that morning.

He also threw 11.88 grams of meth out the window, the complaint said.

Shoen is being held on $1 million bail. His next court hearing is scheduled for Jan. 16. His public defender did not immediately return a phone call for comment Thursday.

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