BRAYMER, Mo. (WDAF) – Prosecutors released court documents Wednesday that shed light on what Missouri investigators say happened on July 21, the day two Wisconsin brothers disappeared north of Kansas City.
The Caldwell County prosecutor charged 25-year-old Garland Joseph Nelson with two counts of first-degree murder in the disappearance of two Wisconsin brothers involved in the cattle business.
According to court documents, the Diemels traveled to Caldwell County to get payment of $250,000 from Nelson for the sale of cattle. Nelson admitted to investigators that he was paid to feed and sell cattle for the Diemels.
Court documents say that Nelson intentionally killed the brothers with a .30-30 rifle on his farm near Braymer. A neighbor reported hearing multiple gunshots coming from Nelson's property on the day the brothers were reported missing.
Nelson then abandoned the Diemels' rented truck at a commuter lot near Holt, Missouri, court documents state. Nelson admitted to taking the brothers' cellphones and throwing them away along the roadway.
Court documents say each brother's body was initially placed inside a 55-gallon metal barrel in a pole barn on Nelson's property.
Prosecutors allege that Nelson then moved the bodies with a skid loader bucket to a pasture nearby, where he set the remains on fire with diesel fuel.
After the bodies were burned, court documents say Nelson hid the remains in a manure pile. Nelson also allegedly tried to get rid of the barrels by crushing them.
Court documents say a blood stain found on Nelson's clothing has been confirmed to be from Nicholas Diemel, according to DNA testing. That same piece of clothing contained a spent .30-30 caliber cartridge.
Nelson admitted to detectives that he had firearms, which, as a convicted felon, he is prohibited from possessing.
Nelson was on federal probation at the time of this crime for a previous federal crime committed in 2016. There's a federal warrant out for him for a probation violation.
He is charged with two counts of first-degree murder, which can carry a life sentence up to the death penalty.
He also faces additional charges of abandonment of a corpse, tampering with physical evidence, armed criminal action, tampering with a motor vehicle and unlawful possession of a firearm.