A Minnesota man has been sentenced after he held a meth-fuelled heavy metal ‘death party’ with his dying wife, during which officials say she died of an overdose.
Duane Johnson, 59, was initially charged with third-degree murder in the death of his wife, Debra Johnson, who was found dead in their home in Searles, southwest of Minneapolis.
First responders arrived at the house after Johnson called 911 to report 69-year-old Debra’s death on January 24, to find Johnson naked and his wife’s body wrapped in a bed sheet.
As reported by WCCO, Johnson told deputies Debra had begged him to take her out of the nursing home she was living in to let her die at home. He then removed his wife from the care home against medical advice.
He went on to say the couple spent the last several days of her life ingesting methamphetamine, having sex, and listening to their favorite song: Metal Health (Bang Your Head) by Quiet Riot.
The 59-year-old was originally charged with third-degree murder, however his legal team negotiated a plea deal where he pleaded guilty to criminal neglect. He was sentenced on Monday (August 12).
According to Minnesota legislature, a caregiver who ‘intentionally neglects a vulnerable adult or knowingly permits conditions to exist that result in the abuse or neglect of a vulnerable adult’ is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
Furthermore, a caregiver who ‘intentionally deprives a vulnerable adult of necessary food, clothing, shelter, health care, or supervision when the caregiver or operator is reasonably able to make the necessary provisions’ is guilty of a felony crime.
Johnson was sentenced to three years – one year less than is listed in the sentencing guidelines – although it’s thought he will serve just 19 months in prison and will serve the rest of his sentence on supervised release. He is also getting credit for the 201 days he has already served since being arrested.
According to the Mankato Free Press, as per Global News, Johnson reportedly ran out of the couple’s home naked, yelling that his wife was dead on January 24.
The police report of the incident states the 59-year-old then re-entered his home and was found by first responders trying to clean little white and black ‘things’ from his skin. Police also found 47 guns and hundreds of rounds of ammunition during a search of the home.
Debra had reportedly stopped taking her medication at the time of her death, with an autopsy finding she died of methamphetamine toxicity.
The couple’s home reportedly had the words ‘Death Parde God Hell’ painted on the front door, according to the Mankato Free Press.
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).