A Waterloo man will spend the rest of his life behind bars after being convicted Thursday of first-degree murder. A Black Hawk County jury deliberated for about six hours before returning the verdict against Joseph Johnson, the 20-year-old Waterloo man accused of killing 18-year-old Treye Blythe of Ackley last year.
Johnson and Blythe were at a party outside a Cedar Falls home when, prosecutors say, a fight broke out and Blythe was fatally stabbed in the chest. It was at that August 2006 party, prosecutors say, where Johnson heard someone, not Blythe, use a racial slur and got angry. That anger eventually sparked a fight involving several individuals.
During the fight, Blythe was stabbed. During the trial, Johnson took the stand on his own behalf and claimed he didn’t stab or even fight with Blythe, but the jury didn’t buy his testimony.