Nancy Crampton-Brophy is a 68-year-old author known for her self-published romance novels. She has also contributed to some blogs. In 2011, she wrote a provocative essay for the blog See Jane Publish entitled, "How to Murder Your Husband." Jump to 2018, and Crampton-Brophy is now charged with murdering her husband.
Chef Daniel Brophy, 63, was found dead from a gunshot at the Oregon Culinary Institute on June 2. Police ruled it a homicide and arrested Brophy last week for the murder and unlawful use of a weapon. She was arraigned in Multnomah County Circuit Court last week.
"Based on information learned during the investigation, detectives believe Nancy L. Crampton-Brophy is the suspect in Daniel C. Brophy's murder," according to the Portland Police Bureau.
"As a romantic suspense writer, I spend a lot of time thinking about murder and, consequently, about police procedure," the post read. "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."
The essay described a range of possible motives for murdering a husband, ranging from avoiding the financial hit of a divorce to infidelity by a "lying, cheating bastard," and even the possibility that the wife is a professional contract killer.
It also weighed the pros and cons of different methods: "Guns — loud, messy, require some skill. ... Knives — really personal and close up. Blood everywhere. Eww."
Nancy and Daniel had been married for 27 years. She posted the following message on Facebook after his death.
"I have sad news to relate," she wrote. "My husband and best friend, Chef Dan Brophy was killed yesterday morning. For those of you who are close to me and feel this deserved a phone call, you are right, but I'm struggling to make sense of everything right now."
"While I appreciate all of your loving responses, I am overwhelmed. Please save phone calls for a few days until I can function," she added.
Some of her neighbors, however, were suspicious. One neighbor, Don McConnell, even told the Oregonian that he sensed a hint of "relief" from the widow after Brophy died.
"She never showed any signs of being upset or sad," McConnell said. "I would say she had an air of relief, like it was almost a godsend."