Chef admits to cooking his wife for four days

Dawn Viens  
By: John Roberts 

A California chef was arrested and put on trial after admitting to police that he cooked his wife’s body for at least 4 days.

The California chef told police that the body simmered for four days after he accidentally killed her, according to reports in the news media.

The grisly details emerged during the second week of the trial for the murder of David Viens, charged with the murder of 39-year-old Dawn Viens in October.

In an interview with authorities that was played for the jury on Tuesday, David Viens told investigators how he killed his wife and disposed of her remains. The interviews were conducted in a hospital because Viens had jumped from an 80-foot cliff when police suspected him in the disappearance of his wife.

David Viens, 49, said that one night he taped his wife's mouth and tied her hands and feet to keep her from driving the car while she was wasted on drugs and alcohol, according to reports in the news media.

Viens allegedly told police: "For some reason I just got violent." He said he panicked when he woke up the next morning and found his wife dead. Viens told investigators that he put her body in a large drum of boiling water and using weights to keep the body submerged.

"She just slowly cooked and I ended up cooking her for four days," he said, "You cooked Dawn's body for four days?" Los Angeles County Sheriff's Sgt. Richard Garcia asked.

"Before it was done," said Viens. He did not say where he cooked the body, but he was the owner of Thyme Cafe Contemporary in Lomita, California, at the time. The defendant said he kept the skull of his wife. "That's the only thing I did not want to get rid of, I wanted to leave it somewhere," he admitted, according to the news media.

He told police that the skull was in the attic of his mother’s house in Torrance, but they did not find it there. Viens' daughter said last week that his father joked about cooking his wife's body to get rid of the evidence. A friend of the defendant also testified last week, according to the newspaper.

Viens, who is attending the trial in a wheelchair, pleaded not guilty.