Man ditching drugs tosses them to West St. Paul officer

Thomas Gilson

Cop catches meth in the face

A St. Paul man trying to ditch his drugs apparently didn't keep track of the West St. Paul officers who stopped the car he and three companions were riding in.

According to police and documents filed in Dakota County District Court July 11, Thomas Charles Gilson Jr., 33, faces a felony charge for fifth-degree possession of a controlled substance after throwing a baggie full of "white crystals" into a police officer's face.

Get rid of the evidence

While West St. Paul officers were on routine patrol near the intersection of Butler Avenue West and Charlton Street in West St. Paul on July 8, they responded to a report of a "rolling domestic" -- a dispute in a moving vehicle.

Gilson had apparently asked an acquaintance for a ride from St. Paul to West St. Paul, according to West St. Paul Lt. Brian Sturgeon. During the drive, Gilson accused the two other passengers of stealing $100 from him, starting a verbal dispute and spurring the 911 call.

Police stopped the sedan with the four adults inside, the complaint said, separating the adults so an officer could question each one.

Standing in front of a squad car, Gilson pulled something out of his pocket and threw it backward, the complaint said.

The officer couldn't have missed Gilson flinging the plastic baggie of white crystals -- it hit the officer in the face. After picking it up and identifying it as suspected methamphetamine, the officer arrested Gilson.

According to Sturgeon, a squad car camera recorded the entire incident. He said Gilson was the only one of the four adults charged.

The crystals were tested, identified and weighed as .26 grams of meth.

If convicted, Gilson could face up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Prior case ends in acquittal

In October of 2010, Gilson was accused of burglarizing a neighbor's apartment and raping her while she was asleep. A Ramsey County jury acquitted him of those charges in 2011. Gilson initially tried to hide from police, according to the criminal complaint, but was found in a dumpster near where the incident was reported.

In January, Gilson was convicted of a gross misdemeanor for third-degree driving while intoxicated, according to court records.

Kaitlyn Roby can be reached at 651-748-7815 and Follow her at


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