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Cedar Rapids man charged with murder in 2016 Webster County death
A Cedar Rapids man has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with the 2016 shooting death of a Webster County man.
Christopher Todd Johnson, 49, had his first court appearance Friday and is being held on a $1 million cash-only bond.
Donald Edward Preston, 51, was found dead in a field in the area of Johnson Ave. and 225th St. in rural Webster County on Dec. 26, 2016. An autopsy determined that he died of gunshot wounds to the head and abdomen, according to a news release from the Webster County Sheriff’s Office.
“Since the initial call on December 26th 2016, Detectives and Agents have followed up numerous leads, conducted numerous interviews and the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation Crime Lab has processed all evidence collected during this investigation in a combined effort to identify and prosecute the individual responsible for this homicide,” the release states.
According to a criminal complaint, Preston and Johnson were together on Dec. 20, six days before Preston’s body was found.
Johnson drove Preston around that day in rural Webster County on gravel roads and showed Preston his handgun. Johnson then shot and killed Preston with the gun and left him in the field, according to the criminal complaint.
Johnson was recently released from prison, after serving about five years for possessing a firearm as a prohibited person, a charge he pleaded guilty to in 2018, the release states.
According to an obituary for Preston on the Laufersweiler-Sievers Funeral Home website, he left behind four children and several grandchildren. He was born in Iowa City and lived much of his life in Fort Dodge.
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