Steven Roger Johnson, 34, has admitted to shooting and dismembering his wife, Manya Jewel Johnson, 32, because she threatened to leave him. He conducted his horrific crime in the presence of their 18-month-old son.
The Minnesota couple had been at odds and Manya threatened to leave and take their son with her. That’s when Steven pulled a gun on Manya and shot her. Steven told police he’d been drinking at the time of the killing, and used a saw to dismember her body in the shower after. Steven admitted to placing his wife’s remains in a friend’s garage, stored in plastic bins. The friend was unaware the body was there until Steven told him. Steven had intended to eventually store her in a rental unit.
St. Paul Police were first made aware of Manya’s disappearance when she’d failed to show up for work. They went to the couple’s home where Steven and a co-worker of his wife claimed they’d been looking for Manya. Her car was found at a park-and-ride lot.
St. Paul Police were informed by White Bear Lake Police and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension that they’d also received a call regarding the missing woman. However, they were contacted by Steven’s friend. Steven had told him Manya’s body was in his garage. As he understood it, Steven told him Manya’s death had been an accident from slipping in the shower, according to the Daily Mail.
ABC News reports Steven was arrested. He had been on supervised released set to expire in 2018, after a first-degree criminal sexual conduct conviction in 1996 where he was accused of handcuffing and raping a woman. He was sentenced to 17 years in prison, but released early in 2008. Now Steven faces second-degree murder charges. He is being held on $2,000,000 bail.
Ramsey County Attorney John Choi said in a statement:
“This horrific crime is an unfortunate example of how quickly domestic violence can turn into homicide.”