Nelson pleads “Not Guilty” to all charges in Diemel brothers case; change of judge sustained

Garland Joseph Joey Nelson

A Braymer farmer entered a plea of not guilty in Division One of Caldwell County Circuit Court on Monday to 10 felony charges stemming from July ultimately resulting from the discovery of the bodies of two missing brothers from Wisconsin. Online court information shows Garland Joseph Nelson waived formal arraignment.

An application for change of judge was sustained, and 43rd Judicial Circuit Court Judge Brent Elliott disqualified himself from hearing the case. The case was ordered transferred to the Supreme Court for assignment. An attorney representing Nelson had filed requests for a change of venue and judge.

Nelson faces two counts each of first-degree murder, abandonment of a corpse, tampering with physical evidence in a prosecution, and armed criminal action. He has also been charged with one count each of first degree tampering with a motor vehicle and unlawful possession of a firearm.

Nick and Justin Diemel were reported missing in July after traveling to Caldwell County to collect on a reported cattle debt of $250,000 from Nelson. Caldwell County Sheriff Jerry Galloway said dental records confirmed identification of the brothers, whose remains were recovered in November.