Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release
Susan Kang Schroeder
PAROLE DENIED FOR WOMAN WHO MURDERED HUSBAND OF THREE WEEKS BY DISMEMBERING, DECAPITATING, DISEMBOWELING, COOKING AND FREEZING BODY IN 1991
SANTA ANA – The Board of Parole Hearings (Board), California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, denied the parole today for a woman who killed her husband of three weeks over Thanksgiving weekend in 1991 by dismembering, disemboweling, cooking and freezing his body. Omaima Aree Nelson, 43, is currently being held at the Central California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla, CA. Nelson was sentenced March 18, 1993, to 25 years to life for second degree murder, with a sentencing enhancement for personal use of a knife and, in a separate incident, assault with a firearm.
Orange County Senior Deputy District Attorney Randy Pawloski, who originally prosecuted the case, appeared at the hearing to oppose Nelson’s parole. The victim’s daughter Margaret Nelson was also present at the hearing and told the Board how her father was taken from her when she was a 15-year-old high school sophomore and how he has missed her growing up and becoming a mother.
Before denying her parole, the Board took into consideration the facts of the case, Nelson’s criminal history, and her lack of responsibility, remorse, rehabilitation, and self-improvement. The Board also cited reports that she has continuously engaged in the habit of having relationships, including conjugal visits, with older men while incarcerated for financial gain. Nelson will be eligible for her next parole hearing in 2026.
Facts of the Case
Nelson met her husband, 56-year-old William Nelson, two months before getting married in November 1991. Over Thanksgiving weekend, between Nov. 28, 1991, and Nov. 30, 1991, after three weeks of marriage, she murdered and dismembered William Nelson. She cut off the victim’s genitals and then cooked the victim’s decapitated head and placed it in the freezer. She boiled William Nelson’s hands in oil. She used the garbage disposal to dispose of much of the body, and other body parts were thrown out in the apartment building dumpster. Several body parts were found in the trunk of a car and in the apartment.
Nelson was arrested on Dec. 1, 1991, by the Costa Mesa Police Department after she contacted an acquaintance to help her dispose of the body. During the trial, Nelson gave varying and conflicting statements as to what had happened. The jury rejected her claim that her husband repeatedly beat and raped her. Subsequent medical examinations and photographs showed no signs of abuse or injuries to the inmate other than those sustained while dismembering the victim.