AUSTIN EDITION Man gets 58-month prison term for selling meth

By Tim Ruzek

A Mower County judge denied a request for probation and treatment Thursday before sentencing an Austin man to almost five years in prison for selling methamphetamine in April.

Ramon Renteria, 38, was sentenced in Mower District Court to 58 months in prison after pleading guilty to committing a second-degree controlled substance crime. He'll serve at least nearly 39 months at the St. Cloud, Minn., prison followed by about 19 months of supervised probation.

Judge Donald E. Rysavy, who followed state sentencing guidelines for the matter, gave Renteria credit for about 171 days served in Mower County Jail.


Rysavy denied a request from Renteria's attorney, Paul Spyhalski, to stay the 58-month sentence and allow Renteria to take part in a year-long residential program for drug and alcohol abusers.

Renteria applied on his own for and was accepted into the Minnesota Teen Challenge program, a faith-based program in Minneapolis, Spyhalski told the judge. The program is intensive and structured with 24-hour supervision for its residents, he said later.

Spyhalski told the judge Renteria had admitted he was at his wife's home and was involved in the sale of meth at her request.

Renteria sold a police informant 11.4 grams of meth for $480 on two separate occasions in April with his wife, Blanca Renteria, 38, at her home at 1000 Eighth Ave. N.E.

In August, Blanca Renteria was sentenced to four years in prison for her role in the sale. During her sentencing, Renteria said she asked her husband to sell the meth so she could buy a tombstone for a daughter.

Ramon Renteria, who received a longer sentence than his wife because of his criminal history, pleaded guilty Aug. 16 to the amended charge. He initially was charged with first-degree controlled substance crime.

For his plea, prosecutors dismissed seven counts of gross misdemeanor child endangerment and a felony charge of aiding and abetting wrongfully obtaining assistance.

Rysavy noted children were present at the home during the meth sale and a "sizable" amount of the drug found by police in the home had to be suppressed as evidence because of a technical error in the search warrant's execution. Authorities found 45.6 grams of meth in the home during an April 20 raid.

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