Kasson man charged with drug possession

Published 7:19 pm Tuesday, August 10, 2021

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A Kasson man arrested after allegedly being caught with drugs at a city park made his first appearance on Friday in Mower County District Court.

Andrew Jacob Witzel, 34

Andrew Jacob Witzel, 34, has been charged with felony third degree drugs – possess methamphetamine/amphetamine in a school/park/public housing zone, felony third-degree drugs – possess schedule 1 or 2 narcotic, LSD, MDA, or MDMA in a school/park/public housing zone, gross misdemeanor dangerous weapons – metal knuckles/switch blade, and two counts of felony fifth-degree drugs – possess schedule 1,2,3,4 – not a small amount of marijuana.

According to the court complaint, police were dispatched at about 7 a.m. on Aug. 5 on a report from a city employee that a male subject was doing drugs in the men’s bathroom at the Veteran’s Pavilion at Bandshell Community Park in Austin. Upon arrival, officers found a male subject, later identified as Witzel, inside the bathroom with a bicycle.

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Witzel told police he was using the bathroom and working on his bike. When asked if he was doing drugs, Witzel denied it.

Part of the officer’s view was blocked by the partially open bathroom door. When asked to exit the bathroom, Witzel leaned toward the direction of the door, which the officer found suspicious. The officer was then able to observe a tin container laying on the floor. The officer retrieved the container and found a razor blade and several plastic baggies that appeared to contain heroin inside.

Witzel said the container was not his and denied knowing the contents.

Witzel was placed under arrest and asked if he needed anything from his bike. Witzel said he needed his black backpack, which was searched for weapons. Inside, police located a knife and brass knuckles, which Witzel claimed was a belt buckle.

Officers searched the rest of the items on the bicycle. Along with the heroin and weapons, police also seized two baggies containing about 2.86 grams of methamphetamine and a glass pipe that tested positive for methamphetamine residue.

Police spoke to the reporting party, who said he knocked on the bathroom door and was told, “Hold up.” When he opened the door, he saw a man with a bike stuffing items inside a tin container as if he was trying to hide something.

A review of Witzel’s criminal record shows prior convictions for drug possession and user of a controlled substance in possession of a firearm.

Witzel will appear in court again on Aug. 19.