The Roundup -

Fairview Man Faces Homicide Charges

 

Nicole Waller

On Monday, August 24th, Cody Wayne Johnston of Fairview, MT was arrested in Sidney, MT and charged with deliberate homicide and tampering with physical evidence in regards to the disappearance of Nicole Waller. Johnston is scheduled to appear in Richland County District Court September 9th, 2015; bail has been set at $250,000.

Waller was reported missing on February 16, 2013 to the Flathead County Sherriff's Office after failing to return home to Kalispell, MT. Waller had been in Fairview visiting her boyfriend, Johnston, and Waller's sister, Carmen Keibler stated that she had been in contact with her sister during the trip to Fairview. Keibler said that Waller had indicated the visit was not going well and on the evening of February 13th she had texted Keibler that she would be returning home the following day. An Attempt to Locate was dispatched on Waller's vehicle and it was discovered that it had been found on February 15th, 2013 near Poplar, MT. The Sidney Police Department was contacted and then launched an investigation into the whereabouts of Waller, who was last known to be in Fairview.

Waller had been staying at Johnston's home in Fairview; Keibler told police that Waller had learned that Johnston had been seeing another woman and had made the trip to confront him about it. Johnston stated that he didn't stay at his residence the night of February 13th because Waller had been angry and was calling him and yelling at him. He said that he stayed at the Parka shop that night; Johnston worked at Parka, Inc. in Sidney. According to Johnston, Waller had called him Thursday morning (February 14th, 2013) around 7:00 am and told him that she was going back to Kalispell. Johnston said Waller was angry because she had found out that he had padlocks put on the Kalispell home he allegedly bought for her to live in. He said that he had gone to work at approximately 8:00 am and shortly thereafter used an office computer to deactivate Waller's phone, as he was the one paying the phone bill. Johnston told investigators that he had not heard from her since and that when he went home at noon on the 14th, both Waller and her vehicle were gone. He assumed that she had headed back to Kalispell until he received a call from Keibler who informed him that Waller hadn't returned and that her vehicle had been found near Poplar. Johnston stated that he returned to work following his lunch break and stayed there until 7:30 pm.

Three Parka supervisors and one employee have given information contradicting Johnston's statements about the hours he was at work on the 14th. One supervisor recalled a conversation that took place that day in which Johnston told him he was taking a personal day because of an argument he'd had with his girlfriend. Another supervisor stated that while driving to work he'd seen Johnston's vehicle at his home in Fairview at approximately 7:30 am and cell phone records support that statement, showing Johnston was in Fairview at the time.

Cody Johnston

A surveillance camera at the Culbertson High School showed a vehicle matching the description of Waller's traveling west on Highway 2 at 10:09 am on February 14th with another vehicle following it. It was determined that the second vehicle matched the description of a truck William Sorteberg owned. Sorteberg told investigators that Johnston came to his home on February 14th initially asking if he had a barrel, which Sorteberg did not. According to Sorteberg Johnston then told him he wanted to play a joke on Waller and move her vehicle and asked if Sorteberg would follow him and give him a ride back to town, which Sorteberg agreed to and that they had left Waller's vehicle on the side of the road. He noticed that Johnston had two cellphones with him at the time and cell phone records show that Johnston's cell phone was turned off between 9:31 am and 12:29 pm.

There have been no sightings of Waller since Johnston claims to have last seen her, February 13th, 2013. Her friends and family haven't heard from her including her three children. None of her accounts have been accessed and there is no evidence that Waller has continued medical treatment with the Methadone clinic or chemotherapy treatments as she had cancer at the time of her disappearance. She also did not show up to sign divorce and custody papers with her former husband Jason Waller and her family says that they have accounted for all of her personal belongings.

 

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