The Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed the conviction and death penalty sentence of a former north-central Iowa woman for her part in the drug-related slayings of five people near Mason City in 1993.
Forty-two-year-old Angela Johnson and boyfriend Dustin Honken were convicted on federal charges of planning and carrying out the slayings of three adults and two children, including two federal drug informants who had dealt methamphetamine produced by Honken.
The bodies of Terry DeGeus of Britt, as well as Mason City residents Greg Nicholson, Lori Duncan, and her two daughters Kandace and Amber, weren’t located for seven years until they were dug up from two graves outside of Mason City in November of 2000. The appeals court did remand a technicality, saying that Johnson could not be sentenced for both aiding and abetting murder while engaged in a drug conspiracy and murder while continuing a criminal enterprise.
The court remanded the case back to U.S. District Judge Mark Bennett, ordering that he vacate the lesser charge of the conspiracy conviction. Johnson is in a federal prison in Fort Worth Texas, while Honken is in an Indiana federal prison and is awaiting his latest appeal.