[UPDATED with Charges, Victim I.D.:] Zazell Preston, OC Homicide No. 68: Husband William Wallace Held in Her Murder

Categories: 2011 Homicides
William-Wallace_150.jpg
UPDATE, DEC. 28, 11:48 A.M.: The woman beaten to death Christmas morning--allegedly at the hands of her husband--has been identified as Zazell Preston. An Orange County District Attorney's office (OCDA) statement on today's arraignment of William Wallace (pictured at right) also mentions the couple's 7-week-old baby and Preston's two young children from a previous relationship were in the Anaheim home at the time of the attack.

Piecing together the OCDA statement with the previous account from Anaheim Police, whose homicide detectives are still investigating:

Sometime between Christmas Eve and Christmas Day (Saturday and Sunday), Wallace allegedly inflicted blunt force trauma to Preston's head, rendering her unconscious. He called 9-1-1 around 9:30 a.m. Sunday to report Preston was in need of medical attention at their apartment in the 200 block of Laxore Street. Officers found her unresponsive in her bed and rushed her to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Wallace was questioned at the Anaheim Police station later that night and booked into the city jail on suspicion of murder. Today, the 30-year-old is charged with one felony count of murder and faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in state prison if convicted. He is being held on $1 million bail as he awaits arraignment scheduled this afternoon at the North Justice Center in Fullerton.

ORIGINAL POST, DEC. 27, 9:55 A.M.: Holidays are stressful for families. But something really snapped in William Wallace's household Christmas morning.

Anaheim Police are not yet saying exactly what happened, but officers were called around 9:20 a.m. Sunday about a woman in her 20s suffering from medical problems in the 200 block of Laxore Street.

There, they discovered a female suffering from injuries police believe are tied to domestic violence. Paramedics rushed the woman to a local hospital where she was later pronounced dead.

Wallace, 30, was questioned at the Anaheim Police station Sunday night and arrested on suspicion of murdering his wife, police say. He was booked into the city jail and held without bail.

The woman's name is not being released because she is the presumed victim of domestic violence. Authorities hope an autopsy will confirm her cause of death.


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