Minnesota man sentenced to 3 years in prison for role in wife’s ‘death party'

Minnesota man sentenced to 3 years in prison for role in wife’s ‘death party'

New Ulm, Minn. (KEYC) - The Searles, Minn., man who pleaded guilty to criminal neglect last month in connection to his wife’s death was sentenced in Brown County Court Monday.

Judge Robert Docherty called this case an unusual one before sentencing Duane Johnson to 36 months in prison.

The terms of the sentence were agreed upon by both Johnson’s attorney and the family of his wife Debra Johnson, citing one thing that should be considered is Debra made it known said she wanted to die at home, though not necessarily the way it happened.

In January 2019, 58-year-old Duane Johnson allegedly caused his wife’s death from an overdose of methamphetamine. It was then he told police he threw her a drug fueled ‘death party’ a few days before her death, and said he was fulfilling a promise to his wife that he would not let her die in a nursing home.

In June, Johnson pleaded guilty to one charge of criminal neglect. Charges of stolen property, and third degree murder were dismissed as part of the plea deal.

Johnson will serve his time at St. Cloud State Correctional Facility, and the court will honor the 201 days he has already served.

He will be eligible for parole in 24 months, which will be in early 2021.

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