Mistaken identity leads to drug charges

Published 5:51 pm Tuesday, December 21, 2021

An Austin man has pleaded not guilty to five counts surrounding a November incident that included drug possession.

Scott Fredrick Paulson, 63, pleaded not guilty to felony third degree possession of methamphetamine in a park zone, felony fifth-degree drugs possession and first degree criminal damage to property with risk to bodily harm in Mower County District Court on Monday.

Scott Fredrick Paulson, 63

He also pleaded not guilty to a pair of misdemeanors: first degree reckless driving and failing to stop for collision.

According to the court complaint, at around 3:06 a.m. on Nov. 19, police were dispatched to a hit-and-run at the intersection of Third Ave. NW and Sixth St. NW.

The victim of the crash indicated that his vehicle was intentionally struck by another vehicle and that he was following the suspect’s vehicle.

The two vehicles were located in the vicinity of Fourth Ave. NW and Second St. NW where they were subsequently stopped.

Officers noticed front-end damage to the victim’s vehicle, including the driver’s side headlight and a crumpled hood.

The victim told police that he had been at a friend’s house, drove home and then was parking his car on the street when a Chevrolet slowly drove past him and then put it in reverse and “slammed” into his car.

The victim said he didn’t know the driver, who then drove away with the victim pursuing.

The complaint states that Paulson told police that he was driving home when he noticed he was being followed by a vehicle that was driven by somebody other than the victim and that after getting behind the vehicle, rammed into the victim’s car one time before driving away.

Paulson said he didn’t know the victim and that he owed him an apology.

Officers searched Paulson’s vehicle, allegedly finding a small amount of marijuana, a marijuana pipe, and a bag of methamphetamine (.49 gram).

Paulson’s next court day is May 20, 2022.