COLUMBUS – A 26-year-old Columbus man received a strong rebuke from the bench in district court before being sentenced to up to five years in prison for a series of drug sales in September that were recorded by a confidential informant.

Platte County District Court Judge Robert Steinke sentenced Wyatt Jensen to three to five years in prison for two counts of delivery of methamphetamine and one count of attempted delivery in connection with a string of drug transactions over a week-long period in mid-September.

But first, Steinke scolded the city man for a lackadaisical attitude toward work.

“The presentence investigation (in this case) tells me that you would rather deal meth than get a job and work,” Steinke said. “You could get an honest job if you wanted to work.”

The PSI prepared by state probation officials classified Jensen as an “underachiever” who had a substantial risk of reoffending if placed on probation for his drug-related convictions, Steinke said.

“To me,” the judge said, “(being an underachiever) is a euphenism for being lazy.”

The meth delivery convictions are Class II felonies, each punishable by up to 50 years imprisonment. The attempted delivery conviction is a Class 2A felony with a maximum penalty of 20 years behind bars.

Steinke gave Jensen credit for 135 days served in the county jail since he was arrested on an outstanding warrant Oct. 18 while riding a bicycle in the 2600 block of 11th Street.

According to court documents, a Columbus Police investigation began in September with reports that Jensen was dealing meth from his residence in the 1000 block of 24th Avenue.

Police said the drug transactions on Sept. 14, 16 and 19 were recorded by an informant equipped with a digital recording device and under the surveillance of officers.