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Redby man pleads not guilty to killing 23-month-old son

ST. PAUL — Gary Wayne Jackson Jr. has pleaded not guilty to killing his 23-month-old son early this year.

Jackson appeared in federal court in St. Paul Monday, Feb. 12, and entered his plea during a brief arraignment.

Federal Magistrate Judge Leo Brisbois gave a federal prosecutor and Jackson's attorney a March 5 deadline to file motions. A hearing on motions is planned in front of Brisbois March 26 in the Duluth federal courthouse.

The magistrate also said federal Judge Ann D. Montgomery will conduct the trial, tentatively set to begin at 9:30 a.m. April 2. However, the location of the trail has not been announced.

Darren Earl Lee Jackson was found dead by Red Lake reservation authorities Jan. 2.

The complaint filed against Jackson, 25, of Redby indicated that he left the boy with the victim's uncle that morning, but when the uncle checked on the boy, there was something wrong with the boy.

The court document also says Jackson said he used methamphetamine on Jan. 1.

Law enforcement officials reported they have texts from Jackson saying he "punched up baby cause he wouldn't stop crying" and "i will never forgive myself ... I just wanna die too its all my fault. ..."

The court document indicated that the child's mother, Nicole Buffalo, told authorities that she thought Jackson was responsible for previous injuries to the boy, including a 2016 skull fracture.

Don Davis
Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.