"A Holmen man confessed to striking his girlfriend in the head with a hammer before slicing her throat early Sunday while the couple’s two young children were inside the home, according to court records.
Prosecutors Tuesday charged Bryce Anderson, 29, with first-degree intentional homicide in the death of 28-year-old Kristen Johnson. He remains jailed in Jones County, Iowa, awaiting extradition to La Crosse County.
Authorities forced their way into the couple’s home at 2908 Cedar Ave. in Holmen on Monday after he made suicidal threats and 'comments about killing someone,' according to the complaint filed in La Crosse County Circuit Court.
They discovered a large pool of blood in a bedroom, along with a hammer and box cutter, and Johnson’s body in the back of a car parked in a garage. She was covered by a blanket and piece of carpet and had a belt wrapped around her neck.
Police found a letter in the house signed by Anderson stating that he confronted Johnson early Sunday about an affair. He tried to strangle her with a belt before she swung a hammer at him, according to the complaint.
Anderson then struck her with the hammer and cut her throat with the box cutter, the complaint stated. He took the couple’s two young children to Beloit, Wis., to see his mother and returned to Holmen.
A witness told police that he received photographs of Johnson’s body sent from her cellphone on Sunday, along with a message stating, 'This is what happens when you are a liar,' according to the complaint.
Anderson fled after the killing and called 911 in Jones County at 8:17 a.m. Tuesday after his car slid into a ditch near Onslow, according to the sheriff's department. He stayed on the phone with dispatchers while police drove to the scene and was arrested without incident.
Johnson ended their turbulent relationship last week and Anderson planned to move out of the house this week, said Harley Large, who described herself as a close friend to Johnson.
'She wasn’t happy and neither was he,' Large said. 'But I would never have imagined him doing this to her.'
Johnson was outgoing and had a passion to make others laugh, Large said. Her four children were the center of her world, she said.
'She touched a lot of people’s hearts,' Large said...Read this article in the LaCrosse Tribune