The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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September 24, 2013

Gun, drug trade leads to arrest

Suspect set up deal with drug agent

MANKATO — A Mankato man who allegedly attempted to trade a handgun for a quarter ounce of methamphetamine last week was arrested and is facing felony charges because the man who claimed to have the drugs was actually an undercover police officer.

The Minnesota River Valley Drug Task Force agent reported he was off duty when Zachary Gordon Goodsell, 21, called him Sept. 17 and asked if he wanted to get high. That prompted a conversation where Goodsell allegedly told the agent he had been “jumped” the night before and used a handgun to protect himself.

Knowing Goodsell had been found guilty of a felony-level crime and couldn’t legally have a gun, the agent asked him if the gun was his. Goodsell allegedly said he had borrowed it from a friend.

“Goodsell then asked (the agent) if he had a gun, and he stated that he did not but he had been wanting to get one,” according to a criminal complaint filed in Blue Earth County District Court.

The agent then arranged to meet Goodsell Thursday at the McDonald’s restaurant on Highway 169. He told Goodsell he was willing to trade a quarter ounce of methamphetamine for a handgun. When Goodsell showed up at about 5 p.m., he was arrested and a pistol was found in a backpack he was carrying, the complaint said.

In addition to two counts of being a felon in possession of a firearm, Goodsell also is facing a felony drug charge because four prescription pills also were allegedly found in his possession after his arrest.

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