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Ex-wife says man admitted to killing sex offender, calls him 'protector' who cared for victimized kids

"I have no doubt that Jim, like all parents, was disgusted with that man’s actions and wished justice ... I want it to be known that Jim is a protector who cared for some of the most vulnerable and victimized children."

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The ex-wife of a man accused of killing a convicted sex offender in Nebraska told sister station KETV he admitted his role in the killing.

Less than a day after local news media received an email about the killing of Mattieo Condoluci, Omaha police said Tuesday James Fairbanks, 43, was arrested for criminal homicide. The email from sender "Stop Predators," said "I killed Matteio Condoluci Thursday May 14th."

Fairbanks' ex-wife, Kelly Tamayo, told KETV that Fairbanks did send the email and confessed to killing Condoluci.

"Jim called me to tell me what had happened and that he was turning himself in. He just wanted to make clear that I would, you know, take care of the kids. He is a very loving and dedicated father," she said.

She said close family members have been stunned by the allegations and said that Fairbanks is "usually a man of good judgement."

Tamayo said Fairbanks has worked in the corrections system with sex offenders in the past and saw the worst of them.

"I could only say, like, that I think he reflected on his experiences working with them as just bothersome and upsetting because they are repeat offenders, we know them to be people who, you know, who repeatedly act out their intent or they act on their wishes that are to harm children," Tamayo said. "And so I think that, you know, he had mixed feelings of great sadness for the victims and frustrations certainly with those kind of people."

Tamayo said there is an injustice in the system, claiming "we don't treat sex offenders, we just house them and then we put them back out on the street and expect them to do different."

She described him as a protective person who was most recently working with troubled children in the Omaha Public School system. She said Fairbanks had never mentioned Condoluci, in particular, to her before the killing.

"I have no doubt that Jim, like all parents, was disgusted with that man’s actions and wished justice," Tamayo wrote in a text message. "Again, I want it to be known that Jim is a protector who cared for some of the most vulnerable and victimized children. Please, if you can, report that Developmental Services of Nebraska had to create a special award for him because he never had to restrain kids and was always able to verbally de-escalate them. Many of them were victims of sexual abuse."

Omaha Public Schools confirmed Fairbanks worked at Morton Middle School from 2016 to 2018 and was most recently working for the middle school alternative program.