DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) — In 1984, the murder of a mother shocked the citizens of Decatur, Alabama. In 2022, the murderer was once again denied parole.

In 1984, William Stewart murdered his wife, Debbie, at their home in Decatur. Stewart dismembered her body and ended up burying her in the backyard of their home. In the weeks following the brutal murder, he built a fish pond over her remains to conceal her body.

Stewart lied to Debbie’s family, claiming that she abandoned her family. He reported her missing and attempted to manipulate law enforcement and family into believing that she was in New Orleans.

In 1987, Stewart filed for bankruptcy and lost the house. Decatur Police asked the new owners of the home if they could dig up the fish pond. The new owners agreed, and investigators located several plastic bags. All contained different sets of Debbie’s remains.

Stewart was arrested and charged with the murder of his wife. He was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.

According to the Morgan County District Attorney’s office, they have continually protested Stewart’s release. District Attorney Scott Anderson attended the parole hearing on June 8, 2022. Anderson stated that it would be unacceptable to allow Stewart, now 70-years-old, to live among the citizens of the state of Alabama.

The parole board voted unanimously to deny Stewart’s request for parole. He will be eligible for parole again in five years. Anderson assured Debbie’s family that he will be there to make sure Stewart is not paroled.