PORTLAND, mineral –
A Portland jury has convicted a self-published romance novelist, who once wrote an essay called “How to Murder Your Husband,” of fatally shooting her husband four years ago.
A jury of seven women and five men found Nancy Crampton Brophy, 71, guilty of second-degree murder Wednesday after deliberating for two days in the death of Chief Daniel Brophy, KOIN-TV reported.
Brophy, 63, was killed on June 2, 2018, while preparing to work at the Oregon Culinary Institute in southwest Portland.
Crampton Brophy showed no visible reaction Wednesday in the packed Multnomah County courtroom.
Lisa Maxfield, one of Crampton Brophy’s attorneys, said the defense team planned to appeal.
Prosecutors told the jury that Crampton Brophy was motivated by money problems and a life insurance policy.
However, Crampton Brophy testified during the trial that she had no reason to kill her husband and that her financial problems were largely solved by cashing in part of Brophy’s retirement savings plan.
She had the same make and model of firearm that was used to kill her husband and was seen on CCTV footage driving to and from the culinary institute, court showings and court testimony were shown.
Police never found the gun that killed Brophy. Prosecutors alleged that Crampton Brophy changed the barrel of the gun used in the shooting and then disposed of the barrel.
Defense attorneys said parts of the gun were inspiration for Crampton Brophy’s writing and suggested someone else might have killed Brophy during a robbery gone wrong. Crampton Brophy testified during the trial that her presence near the culinary school on the day of her husband’s death was just a coincidence and that she had parked in the neighborhood to work on her writing.
Crampton Brophy’s treatise How-two details various options for committing an untraceable murder and professes a desire to avoid being caught. Circuit Judge Christopher Ramras ultimately excluded the essay from the trial, noting that it was published in 2011. However, a prosecutor alluded to the essay’s subjects without naming it after Crampton Brophy spoke in his own defense of it.
Crampton Brophy has remained in custody since her arrest in September 2018, several months after her husband was shot. Her sentencing is scheduled for June 13.