Man whose wife died during 'death party' now charged with murder

The 58 year old is now facing an unintentional murder charge in addition to previous charges.
Author:
Publish date:

The Searles man whose wife died during a days-long "death party" has now been charged with her murder.

Duane Arden Johnson, 58, had initially been charged with criminal neglect and receiving stolen property after his wife, Debra Lynn Johnson, 69, was found dead at their home in January.

He told police he had taken her out of her nursing home at her request so she could die, and they spent days listening to rock music and taking methamphetamine before her body was found by authorities.

The third-degree unintentional murder charge against Johnson was added by the Brown County Attorney on Monday after an autopsy showed that his wife had died from a meth overdose.

Third-degree murder charges are often used when someone has supplied a drug that causes another's death.

When police arrived at his home in the small town of Searles, Johnson ran outside naked and told them his wife was dead. He then went back inside to take a bath so he could wash little white and black "things" coming from his skin, of which there were none.

Follow Bring Me The News on Google News

The words "Death Parde God Hell" had been spray-painted in red on the front door, according to the criminal complaint. Once inside authorities found Debra Lynn Johnson, 69, dead. She was wrapped in a gray sheet tied with a belt at the top of a narrow stairwell.

Johnson said: “I prepared the dead like the Bible told me to do.”

Johnson told investigators that his wife died sometime around 8:30 a.m. that day, but he waited until just before noon to call 911 because he wanted to make sure she was dead.

A search of their home also revealed numerous guns, rifles and hundreds of rounds of ammunition. Johnson claimed he had 47 guns, many of them stolen. 

Next Up

Jamal Mashburn Jr. / Gopher basketball

Gophers offense disappears in loss to Northwestern

The Gophers are quickly falling out of NCAA tournament contention.

Malik Beasley

Timberwolves Malik Beasley suspended 12 games for offseason incident

Beasley was sentenced to 120 days in jail earlier this month.

Russell Wilson

Vikings fans should REALLY hope Russell Wilson doesn't go to the Bears

Wilson has a 6-0 record against Minnesota and could be on his way to the NFC North.

Ostroushko

Celebrated Minnesota musician Peter Ostroushko dies

Ostroushko, who learned his craft in the Ukrainian community of Northeast Minneapolis, had a versatile career including performances with popular artists and orchestras

Costco_Wholesale_Store_(34635636926)

Costco will bump its minimum wage to $16 next week

The company, which has 12 stores in Minnesota, is pushing ahead of retailers Target and Amazon with its new minimum wage

Seth Green/Gopher Football

Gophers wildcat QB Seth Green announces decision to transfer

Green will have immediate eligibility as a graduate transfer.

Minneapolis skyline

Minneapolis pays 3 times more than it receives in state funds, new report says

This report comes as state lawmakers are debating proposals opponents say would "bail out" the state's largest city.

Kirk Cousins

Coller: Is Kirk Cousins' contract extension helping or hurting the Vikings?

Matthew Coller writes a weekly Vikings column for BMTN, with more of his work found at Purple Insider.

University of minnesota sign

U of M gets $5M donation for new center to address racial inequality in healthcare

Using a donation from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, the School of Public Health will work to address racial disparities in healthcare.

Related

Charges: Man's wife died during 'death party'

The 58-year-old man removed his wife from a nursing home against expert advice.

Screen Shot 2019-08-05 at 9.52.55 AM

Man charged with stabbing wife to death in Bloomington

The 56-year-old has been charged with murder.

Screen Shot 2020-01-14 at 1.11.28 PM

Charges: Teen fatally shot man during botched drug deal

The 18-year-old is facing 2nd-degree murder charges for the shooting in Rochester.

Screen Shot 2020-04-21 at 8.00.27 AM

Man charged with gruesome murder of missing teen

The 19-year-old went missing in early April, and her former roommate has been charged with her murder.

Screen Shot 2019-12-12 at 9.00.50 AM

Man charged with murder in Pump N' Munch gas station shooting

The 23-year-old is facing 2nd-degree murder charges.

Jacob McPheeters

Charges: Man shot girlfriend on his birthday, fled to Wisconsin

The 28-year-old is now facing attempted murder charges.

Finney marini

2 charged in connection with man's fatal overdose in Waconia

A 33-year-old man died after taking heroin combined with fentanyl.

Charges: Man stabbed woman with fish knife, stole firefighter's car

The 50 year old from Mayer is facing attempted murder charges.