Alma, WI (KROC-AM News) - A Rochester man has entered not guilty pleas to charges stemming from the death of a western Wisconsin woman several years ago.

48-year-old Randall Merrick on Friday entered the pleas to first-degree homicide and hiding a corpse during a hearing at the Buffalo County Courthouse in Alma, Wisconsin. He is being held on $1 million bail and will return to court in late September for a pretrial conference.

Merrick is accused of causing the death of Beth Johnson through an act of domestic violence and then disposing of her body by transporting it and hiding it in a northern Twin Cities suburb. Johnson was reported missing in March 2017, but she was last seen alive on Christmas Day in 2016.

He was arrested at his home in Rochester in mid-June after the Buffalo County Attorney filed the charges and issued an arrest warrant.

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