State to pay for opposition's expert witness in Pfeifer appeal

BY DI STAFF | SEPTEMBER 30, 2014 5:00 AM

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A man found guilty of third-degree sexual abuse received approval to use an expert witness at the state’s expense, according to court documents.

Evan Pfeifer, 22, who was sentenced to prison in 2012 for raping a woman on the Pentacrest two years earlier, had a motion approved to retain Hollida Wakefield, a forensic psychologist in Northfield, Minnesota, at the state’s expense for $2,500.

Earlier this month, Pfeifer’s lawyer, Gary Dickey, filed the motion.

During Pfeifer’s non-jury trial, due to begin March 25, Wakefield would offer testimony “concerning motivations and factors identified in scientific literature” of false allegations of sexual abuse and false memories.

The non-jury trial is a result of Pfeifer suing the state of Iowa to overturn his conviction, claiming it violates the state and federal Constitutions. He contends his counsel did not provide reasonable representation.

The motion states her testimony is necessary to establish Pfeifer’s counsel did not perform properly during his initial trial.

He was found guilty and sentenced to 10 years in prison in 2012. His appeal was denied in January.

— by Chris Higgins

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