A three-week jury trial has been set in Johnson County for a Braymer man charged with two counts of murder—first degree in the deaths of two Wisconsin men. Online court information indicates the trial for Garland Joseph Nelson is scheduled to begin February 7th, 2022. A pre-trial conference is scheduled for December 7th. The case was continued to February 17th for a case review.
January 21st’s trial setting was held over the defendant’s objection.
Nelson also has been charged with two counts of abandonment of a corpse, tampering with evidence in a felony prosecution, and armed criminal action as well as one count each of tampering with a motor vehicle—first degree and unlawful possession of a firearm.
Nick and Justin Diemel were reported missing in July 2019 after traveling to Braymer to collect on a reported cattle debt.
A probable cause statement accuses Nelson of shooting the brothers, putting their bodies in barrels, and burning the bodies. The Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office previously confirmed dental records were used to identify their remains, which were found in Missouri and Nebraska in November 2019.
A hearing was also held for Nelson in Johnson County today (Thursday) for another case involving a felony charge of stealing—motor vehicle/watercraft/aircraft. The defense counsel requested trial dates, and the state objected at this time. That case was continued to February 17th for a motion hearing.
A probable cause statement accuses Nelson of convincing another man Nelson owned a semi-tractor parked at a Braymer residence and requested it be moved, allegedly without the actual owner’s consent.
Both cases were transferred from Caldwell County to Johnson County on a change of venue. The case involving the murder charges was transferred in September 2020, and the case involving the stealing charge was transferred earlier this month.