Florida man Scott Nelson, 55, testified Thursday in a Orange County courtroom in the murder of Jennifer Fulford, 56. He just straight up admitted to killing the victim, a local nanny, and blamed this on his unrelated feud with a federal probation officer.
“I believe the term is collateral damage,” he said about the victim.
Nelson, who was born an raised in New England, moved to Orlando, Florida in 2017 under the supervision of the probation officer. He blamed this official for creating “a situation” that got him thrown on the street by his landlord.
The defendant testified that he didn’t know Fulford or her employer, and that they were unconnected to his feud with the federal official. Nonetheless, he testified that he put the moral blame for all this on the officer.
“You kick a dog enough enough times, they tend to bite back,” he said.
During cross-examination, prosecutor Linda Drane Burdick got Nelson to acknowledge that he planned to obtain money, and abscond from probation. He wanted to target the probation officer, but his plan to kill the man didn’t go through, he testified. He described the official as “lucky.”
Authorities said Nelson burglarized a family’s home on September 27, 2017, and kidnapped their nanny and house manager Jennifer Fulford. He stole her car and bank card, did an unauthorized withdrawal from her and her husband’s joint bank account, attempted a second one, and later killed the victim so there wouldn’t be a witness.
Fulford was found in a wooded area in Orlando, Florida. She was discovered tied up, left in a field, duct tape wrapped around her head. Her face was covered from chin to eyebrows, such that she would not have been able to breathe. She had two shallow stab wounds to her back, but five penetrated her chest. Two of these struck her heart.
At first, Nelson answered the prosecutor’s questions, and acknowledged details when asked, even when they confirmed his guilt. He said he gave explicit details in his confession to detectives in order to make them “squirm” because he thought they weren’t being forthright with him. On the stand, Nelson admitted to buying items including duct tape, and to possessing zip ties.
“Never leave home without them,” he said about the zip ties.
“Thank you for that quote,” said the prosecutor.
Nelson was pretty forthright with testimony until he started to complain that the prosecutor kept asking him questions about the Fulford murder, and not his feud with the officer.
“I came up here for one reason,” he said.
The defendant suddenly said his memory was getting foggy from prior head injuries. He began to say that he didn’t remember details from the day before, and the day of the murder. Cross-examination continued, despite his complaints. In the end, Nelson said he didn’t remember stabbing Fulford as many times as he did.
[Screengrab via Law&Crime Network]