For weeks at the trial of an Oregon romance novelist accused of killing her husband, a cook, the question arose whether a witness who shared a prison dorm with Nancy Brophy would testify and then tell detectives she described herself as “that far away” (arms outstretched) from her husband when he was shot.
As attorneys for the prosecution and defense argued over whether or not witness Anndrea Jacobs should testify, Multnomah County Judge Christopher Ramras previously ruled that she could only do so if Brophy’s attorneys produced evidence to warrant it would have the state call on them as a “refutation witness” to retract some information presented by the defense. On Wednesday, Brophy’s attorneys asked what exactly Jacobs would refute.
Jacobs would “refute the statement that[Brophy]did not kill her husband,” Assistant District Attorney Shawn Overstreet said, by testifying “that they were so far apart when she shot her husband.”
Only, that’s not quite what Jacobs testified after Multnomah County Judge Christopher Ramras ruled her would allowed to take a stand.
Jacobs said Brophy showed her a copy of it People Magazine when the two shared a dorm room in the Multnomah County jail and offered her to read an article on the case. Jacobs said she suggested that Brophy might “use the media” to find out who killed her husband, Dan Brophy, and Nancy Brophy responded that it wasn’t necessary.
“She said she didn’t have to prove who killed her husband,” Jacobs said. “All she had to worry about was proving that she didn’t do it.”
As for the “so far away” claim, Jacobs described it:
“She told me he was shot twice in the heart,” Jacobs said. “She showed me the distance, she said it was approximate, and used her arm span. I said, ‘Wow, that must have been really close.’ She said, ‘Well, it was about that time.'”
“Did she say anything about her involvement?” Overstreet asked.
“The first time we spoke, she slipped and started saying ‘I,’ but then switched to ‘It,’ and said, ‘It was about that far apart.'”
In other words, not exactly a confession. But that didn’t stop Brophy’s attorney Lisa Maxfield from questioning the witness about what she might have been promised in exchange for her testimony. Jacobs was an accountant who was convicted of felony fraud after being siphoned off more than $1.1 million from medical and dental offices where she worked and sentenced to four years in prison. Jacobs is facing new charges of Medicare fraud, the court announced today. Maxfield did her best to get Jacobs to admit that her testimony was in hopes of some kind of leniency. She suggested that the Portland Police detective who interviewed Jacobs in April had promised if she cooperated in this case “it might be of value to you.”
“His offer was even a little bit better,” Maxfield said. ‘He told you you didn’t even have to testify if you didn’t want to. It was entirely up to you. But he said we won’t play this game until we hear your information. What game did you think you were playing?”
“I don’t know,” Jacobs replied.
“You were hoping your Medicaid case would go away,” Maxfield said.
“No,” Jacobs replied.
At the end of her testimony, Jacobs insisted that she had no desire to be involved in this case, would gain none of it, and had in fact received a number of threats at the Texas prison camp where she is now being held. “It’s not easy, and the worst thing about being incarcerated is to testify against another inmate,” Jacobs said. “There’s a certain code of ethics when you’re in person and in prison.”
The case appears to be nearing completion, with the defense resting Wednesday morning and the state calling its rebuttal witnesses in the afternoon. Next come closing arguments – and a verdict.
https://www.thedailybeast.com/key-witness-falls-flat-at-how-to-murder-your-husband-writer-nancy-brophys-trial-for-murdering-her-husband?source=articles&via=rss Lead witness falls flat at How To Murder Your Husband author Nancy Brophy’s trial for her husband’s murder