ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

clear-night
77°
Mostly Cloudy
H 93° L 76°
  • clear-night
    77°
    Current Conditions
    Mostly Cloudy. H 93° L 76°
  • cloudy-day
    90°
    Afternoon
    Mostly Cloudy. H 93° L 76°
  • cloudy-day
    86°
    Evening
    Partly Cloudy. H 93° L 76°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest newscast

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest traffic report

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest forecast

00:00 | 00:00

National
Romance writer accused of killing husband  penned essay ‘How to Murder Your Husband’
Close

Romance writer accused of killing husband penned essay ‘How to Murder Your Husband’

Police - Romance Author Killed Chef Husband

Romance writer accused of killing husband penned essay ‘How to Murder Your Husband’

A self-published Oregon romance novelist accused of gunning down her husband at the culinary school where he taught once offered other authors a list of ways to kill a husband and not get caught. 

Nancy Crampton Brophy wrote the essay, “How to Kill Your Husband,” in 2011, according to the Oregonian. Brophy, 68, of Beaverton, now finds herself jailed in the Multnomah County Detention Center, accused of using her self-proclaimed knowledge to kill her husband of 26 years. 

Daniel C. Brophy, 63, was found shot June 2 in a kitchen at the Oregon Culinary Institute in Portland, police officials said. Students and staff arriving for class found him and called 911

The beloved chef instructor died at the scene. Nancy Brophy is charged with murder and unlawful use of a weapon. 

Detectives and prosecutors have not said what they believe is the motive in Dan Brophy’s slaying. Nancy Brophy’s seven-year-old essay gave her followers a number of possibilities.

The essay, published on the website See Jane Publish, listed infidelity, domestic abuse and greed as some of the potential motives for a spouse’s murder, the newspaper reported. Though the essay is no longer public and the administrator of See Jane Publish has made the website private, an archived copy of the essay is available online. 

“As a romantic suspense writer, I spend a lot of time thinking about murder and, consequently, about police procedure,” Brophy wrote. “After all, if the murder is supposed to set me free, I certainly don’t want to spend any time in jail. And let me say clearly for the record, I don’t like jumpsuits and orange isn’t my color.”

Multnomah County Sheriff's Office
Nancy Crampton Brophy
Close

Author of romance novel ‘The Wrong Husband’ charged with killing chef husband

Photo Credit: Multnomah County Sheriff's Office
Nancy Crampton Brophy

>> Related story: Romance author charged with killing chef husband

In the tongue-in-cheek explanations of the potential motives, Brophy described the financial motive as a big one. 

“Divorce is expensive, and do you really want to split your possessions?” she wrote. “Or if you married for money, aren’t you entitled to all of it? The drawback is, the police aren’t stupid. They are looking at you first. So you have to be organized, ruthless and very clever. Husbands have disappeared from cruise ships before. Why not yours?”

Under infidelity, she wrote, “Let’s say your Church frowns on divorce. You need to be a widow so you won’t fall out of favor with your religion. 

“At this point, I should mention that it helps if you aren’t too burdened by the 10 Commandments.”

Brophy, whose novels include one titled “The Wrong Husband,” also listed a number of methods by which to kill, including guns, knives, poison or hiring a hitman. Under poison, she listed a drawback as the amount of time it takes the husband to die.

“Who wants to hang out with a sick husband?” she wrote

She described using a knife as “really up close and personal.” Guns, she wrote are loud, messy and require some skill.

“If it takes 10 shots for the sucker to die, either you have terrible aim or he’s on drugs,” she wrote

>> Read more trending news

In the essay, Brophy also wrote that she found it “easier to wish people dead than to actually kill them.”

“I don’t want to worry about blood and brains splattered on my walls,” she wrote. “And really, I’m not good at remembering lies. But the thing I know about murder is that every one of us have it in him/her when pushed far enough.”

A commenter on the Nov. 4, 2011, essay joked, “I’m calling Dan to make sure he’s alright.”

Dan Brophy’s slaying, which stunned and devastated his students, colleagues and friends, initially puzzled detectives. As the investigation pressed on, Nancy Brophy admitted that she was considered a suspect and displayed what at least one neighbor considered an odd reaction to the death of the man she called her “best friend” in a Facebook post announcing his death

“She never showed any signs of being upset or sad,” Don McConnell, a neighbor for six years, told the Oregonian after the arrest last week. “I would say she had an air of relief, like it was almost a godsend.”

McConnell also spoke to KOIN, who he told that he “got the nerve” to broach the subject of the investigation with the widow over the summer. He said he asked if investigators were keeping in touch with her. 

“She said, ‘No, I’m out of the loop,’ and I said, ‘What do you mean?’” McConnell said. “And she said, ‘They consider me a suspect.’”

Friends and family expressed disbelief that Nancy Brophy could be responsible for her husband’s death. 

“I’ve known her for 30 years,” friend Tania Medlin told KGW8 in Portland. “I can’t imagine. I just don’t think she’s capable.”

Heather Kinnett, who identified herself as Nancy Brophy’s niece, wrote on a Facebook page established in Dan Brophy’s memory that her aunt could not have committed the crime. 

“I am terribly saddened and angered by her arrest and false accusation of having murdered Dan for many reasons, not the least of which being the thought that they have stopped looking for the person or persons who did murder Dan,” Kinnett wrote. “Nancy did not commit this horrendous crime. Dan was the love of her life. They had a happy marriage, with a lot of laughter, a lot of great food and a lot of ‘Brophy-isms,’ and there is nothing Nancy would value more than their life together that would cause her to have taken his life and left her own with this giant gaping hole.”

Dan Brophy’s mother, Karen Brophy, told the Oregonian following her daughter-in-law’s arrest that his family was stunned. 

“The family is in absolute shock right now and we are not making any comments,” Karen Brophy said. 

On her website, Nancy Brophy said her husband’s mantra was, “Life is a science project.” She credited him with the chickens and turkeys in their backyard, a vegetable garden and a hot meal every night.

“I can’t tell you when I fell in love with my husband, but I relate the moment I decided to marry him,” Brophy wrote. “I was in the bath. It was a big tub. I expected him to join me and when he was delayed, I called out, ‘Are you coming?’

“His answer convinced me he was Mr. Right. ‘Yes, but I’m making hors d’oeuvres.’ Can you imagine spending the rest of your life without a man like that?”

She described her stories as being about “pretty men and strong women, about families that don’t always work and about the joy of finding love and the difficulty of making it stay.”

“The Wrong Husband,” which Brophy published in 2015, is part of her “Wrong Never Felt So Right” series.

Read More
VIEW COMMENTS

There are no comments yet. Be the first to post your thoughts. or Register.

The Latest Headlines You Need To Know

  • The Crittenden County Medical Examiner in Arkansas has ruled the death of Memphis, Tennessee, mother Aisha Fair and her two sons a murder-suicide. >> Watch the news report here The news comes several weeks after deputies found Fair and her young boys dead inside a car in the Mississippi River. The Crittenden County Sheriff’s Office said Fair was in an accident on I-40 moments before going into the river in late July.  Investigators said she fled the scene of that accident, drove through a nearby field and into the river, where the bodies were recovered.  Fair, 26; Charvon Lofton, 7; and Jattir Ragland Jr., 2, died in the crash. >> On Fox13Memphis.com: Family identifies Memphis mother and 2 children after drowning in lake Days before driving into the river, Fair posted on GoFundMe and Facebook about her battle with “schizoaffective disorder,” a mental health condition, WHBQ reported. Moments after getting the medical examiner's results, WHBQ’s Tony Atkins sat with Dr. John McCoy, a clinical psychologist of 45 years, to discuss the incident. “Nobody did anything wrong. It’s a genetic medical disorder just like two or three other medically inherited disorders,” said Dr. John McCoy.  He said it's not common for people dealing with mental health issues to become violent.  >> Read more trending news  “Most people who have a severe mental illness are not dangerous, but sometimes they are,” McCoy said.  McCoy said best practices for loved ones are to keep constant communication with those affected by the disorder.  “It helps to know what they’re thinking. It’s a lot better if you know what a person is thinking and the conclusions they’ve come to,” McCoy said. “These are largely inherited and they affect normal, ordinary people that had not idea they had the particular genetic makeup.” WHBQ reached out to Fair’s loved ones about the report but are still working to make contact. 
  • With President Donald Trump leading the charge, Republicans and the White House went on the offensive on Tuesday, accusing Democrats of using flimsy allegations of sexual misconduct in a last-ditch bid to stop the Supreme Court nomination of federal appeals court Judge Brett Kavanaugh, as GOP leaders vowed a Senate vote as early as next Tuesday. “We’re going to be moving forward – I’m confident we’re going to win,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters just off the Senate floor, as top Republicans formed a solid political wedge in public, making the argument that ‘vague, uncorroborated allegations’ should not be allowed to stop Kavanaugh. “The Democrats in the Senate have had one goal since the beginning of this process, and that is to sink Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination,” said Sen. John Thune (R-SD). “I think everybody in America understands there is a presumption of innocence,” McConnell added. “That standard of fairness is applied to every American citizen.” . @SenateMajLdr: 'We have hired a female assistant to go on staff and to ask these questions in a respectful and professional way. We want this hearing to be handled very professionally not a political sideshow…' #Kavanaugh pic.twitter.com/N0hGKA6NqX — CSPAN (@cspan) September 25, 2018 Increasingly confident that Kavanaugh will survive Thursday’s hearing – where Dr. Christine Blasey Ford is scheduled to speak about her allegations of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh from 1982 – Republicans set up a possible Friday vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee on the Kavanaugh nomination. If Kavanaugh is approved by the panel on Friday, the full Senate could start debate on the nomination as early as Saturday, with a final vote occurring by the following Tuesday – if Republicans have 50 votes for the judge. “The committee will do its work,” said Sen. David Perdue (R-GA), “and we’ll hopefully get to a vote as soon as possible.” So far, GOP Senators who have been on the record in support of Kavanaugh aren’t backing away from the judge at this point because of the multiple allegations against him. “Based on what I know now, it would not be enough for me to wipe out his entire life,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who argued to reporters that a lack of corroborating evidence from Ford is an important point. Republicans also set in motion a plan to hire a special outside counsel – Rachel Mitchell, a sex crimes prosecutor from Arizona – who would ask questions of Ford, instead of the all male GOP lineup on the Senate Judiciary Committee. “I’ve taken this additional step to have questions asked by expert staff counsel to establish the most fair and respectful treatment of the witnesses possible,” said Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA), the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. “I think it’s smart of us to have someone who is a professional do it,” Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said of the outside counsel decision, as Graham told reporters if he felt like something else needed to be asked, then he might speak up at some point. The move was seemingly taken with the 1991 Clarence Thomas-Anita Hill hearings in mind, when GOP Senators faced stern criticism for how they questioned Hill’s accusations of sexual harassment against the future Supreme Court Justice. Democrats expressed dismay at the decision. “I’m amazed that they would not ask questions themselves,” said Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) of Republicans. Meanwhile at the United Nations, President Trump made very clear that he’s on board with Kavanaugh, as he lashed out at Democrats, and one of the judge’s accusers. “The Democrats are playing a con game. C-O-N. A con game,” the President said. “And it’s a shame. And they know it’s a con game.” President Trump on Judge #Kavanaugh confirmation process: 'This is a con game being played by the Democrats.' pic.twitter.com/rHDDaTO4z0 — CSPAN (@cspan) September 25, 2018 “I look at the second accuser – the second accuser has nothing. The second accuser doesn’t even know – she thinks, maybe, it could have been him, maybe not,” Mr. Trump said. “She admits that she was drunk.” That woman, Deborah Ramirez, is not expected to testify before the panel on Thursday.  
  • Police believe a Roswell, Georgia, piano teacher may have sexually abused dozens of his students over three decades of teaching.  >> Watch the news report here WSB-TV first reported on Troy Palmer's arrest earlier this month at his home in north Fulton County. Two victims came forward over the summer with stories about the abuse they suffered during Palmer's lessons. Since his arrest, police tell WSB-TV's Mike Petchenik that at least three more victims have contacted them. >> PREVIOUS STORY: Georgia piano teacher arrested on child molestation charges “We really suspect that there’s (dozens) of people that could be victims. He’s actually targeting boys,' Officer Lisa Holland told Petchenik. Investigators said Palmer abused some of those students while parents were just feet away. According to arrest warrants, Palmer told parents to stay outside of his home so that he could have the kids inside. The warrant said he taught the children in a “sound proofed” and locked room.  'It's kind of a classic 'grooming case' where he is a friend with the parents, tries to be friends with the kids and this goes on for years,' Holland said. Petchenik also spoke with a woman who lived up the street from Palmer and asked WSB-TV to conceal her identity.  >> Read more news stories  She recalled a specific comment that Palmer made to her that in hindsight was concerning. '“He said something about loving children so much, how he loved the big, fat ones. ‘You just want to squeeze them,’” she told Petchenik. Palmer was indicted on child molestation charges by a grand jury Tuesday and remains in the Fulton County Jail without bond.
  • Controversy continues to swirl around Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh in the wake of decades-old sexual misconduct allegations leveled against him by a pair of women. >> Read more trending news What was expected to be a simple nomination process has become mired in allegations involving incidents alleged to have occurred while Kavanaugh was in high school or college. Deborah Ramirez told The New Yorker he made unwanted advances toward her during a party at a dormitory during the 1983-84 school year, while she and Kavanaugh were attending Yale University. Earlier this month, Christine Blasey Ford told The Washington Post that Kavanaugh drunkenly groped her and tried to take off her clothes at a party in the 1980s, when they were both teenagers. Update 10:45 p.m. EDT Sept. 25: Senate Republican leaders have tapped Arizona prosecutor Rachel Mitchell to question Christine Blasey Ford and SCOTUS nominee Brett Kavanaugh during a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday, according to a statement from committee chair Chuck Grassley. Mitchell, a career sex crimes prosecutor, will question Ford and Kavanaugh on Ford’s accusation that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a party when the two were in high school in the early 1980s. >> Related: Brett Kavanaugh denies sexual assault allegations in first TV interview: ‘I never did any such thing’ “The goal is to de-politicize the process and get to the truth, instead of grandstanding and giving senators  an opportunity to launch their presidential campaigns,” Grassley said. Mitchell is on leave from the Maricopa County Prosecutor’s Office in order to participate in the hearing Thursday. Update 8:45 p.m. EDT Sept. 25: Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein called the planned vote Friday morning on Brett Kavanaugh’s SCOTUS nomination “outrageous.” “For Republicans to schedule a Friday vote on Brett Kavanaugh today, two days before Dr. Blasey Ford has had a chance to tell her story, is outrageous,” the California Democrat said in a statement Tuesday. Feinstein accused the GOP of creating an unfair process. “First Republicans demanded Dr. Blasey Ford testify immediately. Now Republicans don’t even need to hear her before they move ahead with a vote, she said. Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, however, denied the accusations.  >> Related: SCOTUS nominee Brett Kavanaugh in first TV interview repeatedly denies sexual assault accusations “Still taking this 1 step at a time,” Grassley said in a post on social media. Grassley said that committee rules require three days notice before a vote.  “So we’re following regular order,” he said. He also said if the committee isn’t ready to vote after Ford’s and Kavanaugh’s testimony Thursday, then they’ll postpone it. Update 6:45 p.m. EDT Sept. 25: The Senate Judiciary Committee has scheduled a vote for Friday morning on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court. Ford is set to testify before the committee on Thursday about the assault she said she suffered at the hands of Kavanaugh at a party when the two were still in high school. There’s no word yet on whether Ramirez will get a chance to tell her story before the committee votes, but committee staffers interviewed Kavanaugh Tuesday about her allegations and he denied them again, according to news reports. Update 1:45 p.m. EDT Sept. 25: An attorney representing Ramirez said Tuesday that his client wants the FBI to investigate allegations against Kavanaugh. “We remain adamant that an FBI investigation, where all witnesses are questioned under threat of perjury, is the only way to get the truth,” attorney John Clune wrote on Twitter. Clune added that Ramirez stands by her account of drunken wrongdoing by Kavanaugh, as told to The New Yorker and published Sunday. Original report: President Donald Trump on Tuesday accused Democrats of using the allegations to play a “con game” with Kavanaugh. >> SCOTUS nominee Brett Kavanaugh in first TV interview repeatedly denies sexual assault accusations The president claimed that Deborah Ramirez, a woman who accused Kavanaugh of making unwanted sexual advances toward her during a college party in the 1980s, said, “She was totally inebriated, and she was all messed up, and she doesn’t know it was him, but it might have been.” “This is a con game being played by the Democrats,” Trump said. Ramirez is the second woman to go public with accusations against Kavanaugh. She told The New Yorker in a story published Sunday that he made unwanted advances toward her during a party at a dormitory during the 1983-84 school year, while she and Kavanaugh were attending Yale University. >> Second Kavanaugh accuser: Who is Deborah Ramirez? University professor Christine Blasey Ford is expected to provide testimony Thursday at a public Senate Judiciary Committee hearing about a separate alleged encounter she says she had with the Supreme Court nominee when they were both teenagers. Ford told The Washington Post earlier this month that Kavanaugh drunkenly groped her and tried to take off her clothes at a party in the 1980s. Kavanaugh has issued several denials of the allegations. >> Who is Brett Kavanaugh, Trump’s nominee to the Supreme Court? 'I’ve never sexually assaulted anyone,' Kavanaugh said in an interview that aired Monday on Fox News. 'I've always treated women with dignity and respect.' The Supreme Court nominee is also expected to testify at Thursday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.
  • A new interview shows a suspect repeatedly denying any role in the murder of an Osceola County couple, despite intense grilling from detectives. Roosevelt and Janette Dixon were found shot to death in their Kissimmee home in July. Video of the nearly two-hour interview, obtained by Channel 9, shows Federico Gondola denying the murder multiple times. “I didn’t have anything to do with this,” Gondola says at one point. His hands and feet are shackled in the video, while he's sitting in a small room facing two detectives. More than half an hour later, his story didn’t change. “I didn’t murder nobody, though. I would not murder nobody. I did not – I would not take a life,” Gondola said. Documents released by prosecutors tell a different story. Detectives said Gondola was the Dixons’ handyman who tried to extort the victim after allegedly finding child porn on his computer. During a confrontation, detectives said Gondola opened fire, killing Mr. Dixon first, then his wife. There were no signs of forced entry and the hard drive for the home surveillance system was missing, deputies said. According to deputies, Gondola tried to recruit a friend to dispose of the bodies, which helped investigators crack the case. Read: Handyman shot, killed Kissimmee couple in possible extortion attempt, deputies say Even with that evidence, Gondola wouldn’t admit to anything in his interview with police. Detective: “I’ve got an arrest warrant for you. I’m charging you with murder.” Gondola: “Me?” Detective: “Yeah. And guess what: The opportunity was there, my man.” The interview ends with Gondola asking to speak to a lawyer. The Dixons’ deaths were two of 13 homicide investigations that plagued Central Florida in just seven days in the middle of July. Gondola remains at the Osceola County Jail. Get breaking news alerts from the free WFTV News & Weather apps