William Wallace booking photo.Credit: Orange County Jail
Credit: Orange County Jail

California Man Allegedly Propped Wife’s Dead Body Up On The Couch, Then Had Kids Open Christmas Gifts In Front of Body

A California man killed his wife then propped her body up on a sofa in front of their children as they opened Christmas presents.

The grim details came out during the trial of William Wallace on Monday. Prosecutors say that the man killed his wife Za’Zell Preston on Christmas Eve in 2011 after an argument. He then propped the woman up on the couch with sunglasses the next day as the children opened their Christmas gifts.

The 39-year-old man told the kids that their mother was drunk. On the night of her death, a neighbor heard the couple arguing loudly. Wallace allegedly told Preston’s relatives that “we were drinking, and during the argument, I tossed her around a bit.” Authorities found blood and holes punched in the wall throughout the couple’s apartment. A door was also off of its hinges. Wallace has insisted that his wife died from falling into a glass table while drunk.

Preston’s oldest daughter reportedly saw her mother trip and fall into a table before Wallace was able to stop her. The child pulled the glass out of her mother’s body and cleaned her wounds before Wallace moved her into a bathtub. He claims that her head struck something as he dragged her into the bathroom.

Wallace has been charged with first-degree murder and is facing 25 years to life in prison if convicted.

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