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Jury selection underway in Benton County murder case

Sabrina Hustad Janish was killed last October

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VINTON — Jury selection is underway for an October 2015 murder trial.

David C. Miller, 32, is accused of killing 25-year-old Sabrina Hustad Janish last October in Benton County. He was charged with first-degree murder earlier this year.

Benton County authorities said Miller killed Janish sometime around Oct. 25. Her body was found that day at Miller’s home at 3257 59th Street Trail north of Shellsburg in rural Benton County. The Benton County Sheriff’s Office took a report of a truck stolen from a home on 59th Street Trail around 4 a.m. Oct. 25. The victims told deputies they saw a man take the truck and head south. The truck was later found crashed into construction equipment about 1.5 miles away.

While the stolen truck was being investigated, a nearby resident reported that his truck also has been taken.

Around that time, the Linn County Sheriff’s Office took a report of a man suffering from a head wound walking along Lewis Bottoms Road, two miles east of where the first truck was crash. That man, later identified as Miller, was taken to a Cedar Rapids hospital and interviewed.

Miller was initially arrested on charges of operating a vehicle without the owner’s consent and parole violation.

Around noon on Oct. 25, Benton County took two reports of a woman’s body found at Miller’s home. There, authorities found Janish, who had been stabbed and strangled.

Court documents said Miller’s blood was found on Janish’s clothing and blood belonging to both Janish and Miller were found on a vehicle. There was a large amount of blood in Miller’s home and a knife was found with Janish’s blood on it, authorities said. A pair of boots containing Miller’s DNA and Janish’s blood were also recovered.

First-degree murder is a Class A felony punishable by life in prison.

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