KINGSTON, Mo. (WDAF)— The Missouri man accused of killing two Wisconsin brothers will have his case heard in courtrooms a little farther south.
A judge approved a change of venue on Tuesday for Garland “Joey” Nelson’s case. His criminal court proceedings will now move from Caldwell County to Johnson County, Missouri.
Nelson, of Braymer, is facing the death penalty in the deaths of 24-year-old Justin Diemel and 35-year-old Nicholas Diemel, of Shawano County, Wisconsin.
He’s been charged with two counts of first-degree murder, abandonment of a corpse and several other charges.
The brothers’ father reported them missing July 21, 2019, after they didn’t return from a visit to Nelson’s northwest Missouri home, where they had gone to collect a $250,000 debt, according to court records.
According to a probable cause statement, Nelson shot the brothers, put their bodies in 55-gallon barrels and allegedly burned the bodies.
Nelson told investigators he dumped the remains on a manure pile and hid the barrels on his property. The remains were eventually found in Missouri and Nebraska.
Nelson has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial. He is currently still in custody at the Caldwell County jail.
This week, more than a year after the Diemel brothers arrived in Missouri, their remains were finally returned home to their loved ones in Wisconsin.
On Sept. 14, family, friends and community members lined the streets of Navarino, Wisconsin, and welcomed the brothers back.
“It just feels good to finally have them back,” friend Cara Krull told FOX4. “It’s been way to long. It shouldn’t have taken this long, and now the family can finally lay them to rest and have them here with them.”
Their families said they’re vowing to keep the brothers’ names alive until justice is served.