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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Florida
Roger B. Handberg, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Friday, September 1, 2023

Clay County Convicted Felon Pleads Guilty to Drug and Firearm Charges

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – U.S. Attorney Roger B. Handberg announces that Edward Sherwood Gustafson IV, 30, of Green Cove Springs has pleaded guilty to possessing with the intent to distribute five grams or more of methamphetamine and possessing a firearm and ammunition as a convicted felon. Gustafson faces a minimum mandatory term of 5 years, and up to 40 years, in federal prison on the drug charge and up to 15 years in federal prison on the firearm and ammunition charge. Gustafson also agreed to forfeit a Smith and Wesson pistol and 15 rounds of ammunition traceable to the firearm offense. Gustafson was arrested on May 9 and ordered detained. A sentencing date has not yet been set.   

According to court documents, on Jan. 21, 2023, members of the Clay County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) were looking for Gustafson based on an active felony arrest warrant for him. A CCSO deputy observed Gustafson driving and initiated a traffic stop. Upon stopping, Gustafson immediately got out of his truck and a struggle ensued between him and the deputy. The deputy eventually handcuffed and arrested Gustafson on the felony arrest warrant. During a subsequent search of Gustafson’s truck, law enforcement located a loaded Smith and Wesson pistol. Underneath the truck’s hood, a travel bag was zip-tied to the engine bay area which contained cocaine, methamphetamine, a scale for weighing drugs, approximately 50 small baggies and numerous pills. Further investigation determined that the total weight of the methamphetamine was approximately 22 grams and that Gustafson had seven prior felony convictions to include felony domestic battery, fleeing and eluding law enforcement and shooting a deadly missile. As a convicted felon, Gustafson is prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition under federal law.

This case was investigated by the Clay County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Jacksonville Office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin C. Frein. The forfeiture is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mai Tran.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities and measuring the results.


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