Florida nanny suffered extreme torture before transient stranger murdered her: Police

A Florida nanny found murdered in Sept. was tortured and abused by a homeless stranger who stabbed and suffocated her, according to police.

As CrimeOnline previously reported, in late Sept., Orange County authorities found the body of missing nanny, Jennifer Lynn Fulford, 56, in Winter Park, off of Apopka-Vineland Road on Saturday. Detectives found the victim’s SUV a day prior in a different location in Orange County. They later arrested Scott Edward Nelson, 53, a transient man caught on surveillance footage with fresh cuts and wounds, taking money from the victim’s bank account at an ATM.

According to court documents, Fulford was “was stabbed and suffocated before being dumped in the woods,” the Orlando Sentinel reports. The suspect abandoned Fulford in woods located in Orange County, where she remained for three days, with her face wrapped in duct tape and her hands and ankles bound.

RELATED Reading: Manhunt for transient person of interest in kidnap and murder of beloved nanny; up to $20K reward offered: Police

The victim’s husband, Robert Fulford, indicated in Oct. that he had no idea who Nelson was or how he knew his wife, if he even knew her at all before the attack.

“The man we suspect took her life, she probably would’ve done anything to help him out, just like she helped out other people,” Robert Fulford said. “It’s just so indescribable. … She was just so full of life.”

Authorities found numerous pieces of incriminating evidence inside the trunk of Jennifer Fulford’s car, including a bloody white towel, watch, and shirt that Nelson was reportedly wearing the day the victim disappeared. Detectives noted he wore the shirt and watch while allegedly taking $300 cash from the victim’s bank account at an ATM machine. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement stated that lab reports confirmed that DNA from the blood stains matched to Nelson.

In Nov., Nelson sent a letter from jail to the judge presiding over the case, and wrote that he was not the killer but would provide information to the “real killer” in exchange for “preferential treatment.”

“Allegedly, I kidnapped/murdered a woman in Winter Park and have spoken to no law enforcement,” Nelson wrote. “Their [sic] are many things they don’t know!”

Yet, days later, according to detectives, Nelson fully admitted to killing Jennifer Fulford. Nelson is currently in federal prison on charges of murder, robbery with a deadly weapon, hindering communication with law enforcement, carjacking, burglary, robbery, and kidnapping.

Family and friends said that Fulford was a loving wife, mother, and new grandmother. She had plans to fly to Texas to see her newborn granddaughter before tragedy struck. The family that hired Fulford as their nanny stated that she was always prompt, caring, and cordial. She worked for the family for seven years.

[Feature Photo: Jennifer Fulford and Scott Nelson/ Winter Park PD]