The Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled against a Faribault man convicted of selling methamphetamine, finding that though the district court made some errors, they weren’t enough to alter the verdict.
Wayne Emil Pexa, 62, was convicted in May 2018 of first-degree sale of methamphetamine and second-degree drug possession, and sentenced to 75 months in prison. One count of marijuana possession against Pexa was dismissed.
Pexa alleged that his right to present a meaningful defense was hampered by several of the district court’s decisions. They included allowing Pexa, who represented himself at trial, to introduce evidence that could point to an alternative perpetrator as well as a decision to later rescind the initial decision. The three-judge panel found that those decisions did not impact the guilty verdict, explaining that agents with the Cannon River Drug and Violent Offender Task Force discovered a wallet in his home with several bindles of meth and four amphetamine pills along with Pexa’s ID and other items belonging to him in his home.
The appellate court also noted that Pexa told agents where to find the wallet.
Pexa’s allegations that he wasn’t permitted to offer evidence of his evidence didn’t hold up, according to the Court of Appeals. In the Monday ruling written by Judge Peter M. Reyes Jr., the court found the court record didn’t support Pexa’s claims.
“There is nothing to suggest that appellant actually planned to testify that the methamphetamine belonged to some other specific person. Rather, most of his questions and testimony consisted of vague conjecture,” wrote Reyes.
Pexa’s final contention, that he wasn’t given enough time to subpoena others who’d been in his home around the time agents searched it, also didn’t stand up. The court found that one individual subpoenaed testified during trial. Others weren’t served because they couldn’t be located by sheriff’s deputies.
Pexa is currently in prison in Minnesota Correctional Facility-Lino Lakes, according to state records. He won’t be released until Dec. 15, 2021 at the earliest.