Trevor J. Holst
Felon arrested for hiding guns, mom arrested for hiding him

A convicted Hager City felon and his mother have found themselves in hot water recently: The son for hiding stolen guns and the mother for hiding her son.

Trevor J. Holst, 40, was ordered to pay $1,000 cash bail Dec. 21 in Pierce County Circuit Court on felony possess firearm – convicted of a felony, felony receiving stolen property > $5,000 to $10,000 or firearm, possession of THC and possess drug paraphernalia charges. At a Jan. 4 arraignment hearing, Holst pleaded not guilty. If convicted, he faces up to 10 years in prison and/or $25,000 in fines.

Nancy Lou Johnson, 71, Hager City, posted a $10,000 signature bond Dec. 22 on felony harboring/aiding a felon and resisting or obstructing an officer charges. If convicted, she faces 3.5 years in prison and/or fines totaling $10,000.

According to the complaints: An Olmstead (Minn.) County Sheriff’s Office detective informed Pierce County Sheriff’s Office Oct. 7 that two men were arrested in that county on drug-related charges; one of them told police that the other man had stolen guns from a storage unit in Rochester, Minn. and given Holst four of them. The man told detectives that Holst kept the guns in a safe behind a false wall in the basement of his mother’s town of Trenton residence. Holst was convicted Sept. 4, 2018 of felony possession of methamphetamine, which prohibits him from owning or possessing firearms.

A Rochester Police Department report listed nine firearms stolen from a storage unit near the airport in that city, along with other property, including a .22 rifle, a Browning 12-gauge shotgun, a Rock River arms AR-15 rifle, a custom 9mm AR-15, a Colt Mustang 380 handgun, a Kimber Elite Ultra Carry 45 caliber handgun, a Kimber 9mm handgun, a Kimber 45-caliber handgun and a Hellcat 9mm handgun.

On Oct. 12, Pierce County investigators executed a search warrant at Johnson’s Hager City residence. Johnson told police she was not aware of any guns or gun safes in the house. She directed officers to the basement when asked where Holst lived and said a man had showed up at the house recently with a large duffel bag. While police were talking to Johnson, Holst called her phone and she informed him of the search warrant. He told her that officers would not find any guns. However, officers soon found a safe behind a false wall.

Inside the safe, investigators found a Rock River AR-15, a Remington Magnum Model 870 20-gauge shotgun, a Kimber custom 45-caliber handgun with the serial number filed off, a Springfield Ultra compact 45-caliber, four 45-caliber magazines containing ammunition, one 26-round 40-caliber magazine with ammunition, tan Body Armor with rifle plates, two glass smoking devices (one tested positive for meth), needles, 2.7 grams of marijuana, a Ramsey County correctional badge, a tactical vest with machete, and a trail camera. Three cell phones were set up in the bedroom as security cameras. Johnson said the badge was part of a Halloween costume.

Holst later called police and admitted to having the guns and that he got an AR and a Colt 1911 from one of the Rochester suspects. He also knew those two guns were stolen, but said the others belonged to him. However, he said the body armor did not belong to him. He said he would turn himself in when he had to.

Deputies attempted to locate Holst at Johnson’s house at 9:04 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 20 after receiving an anonymous tip that he was there. When they arrived, Johnson said he was still not there (officers had tried to locate him there at 3 a.m.) and that the only people in the house were two children, who was sleeping in the basement. She became upset with officers, adamantly denied Holst was there and closed the door, denying police access to the home. Officers made it clear to her that if they found Holst, she would be arrested.

Investigators obtained a search warrant and returned to the house. Johnson was getting ready to leave and said she was going Christmas shopping, even though she had just said two children were asleep in the house. She pleaded “the fifth” and left. A 34-year-old woman answered the door and police entered, finding Holst in the basement. He was transported to Pierce County Jail without incident. There were no juveniles in the house.

Officers detailed in the report that Johnson did not go Christmas shopping, but went to a bar for a beer and then sat in her car in a Red Wing parking lot for an hour. She was arrested during a traffic stop.

Holst is scheduled to appear at a status conference at 2:45 p.m. Feb. 7. Johnson’s next court appearance is a 2 p.m. Jan. 25 status conference.

Nancy Lou Johnson

January 17, 2023