The lust for money and financial gain is one of the strongest desires among human beings today. But when an opportunity arises for some easy money, no matter what the consequences might be, sometimes the desire is just too overbearing.
Nick was close with his parents and especially with his dad. But all those millions of dollars in inheritance just couldn’t come soon enough for the teen, so he decided to take matters into his own hands…
Nick was a kid much like any other, apart from the fact his folks were wealthier than most. Nick wanted for nothing as a child and was raised with more care, love, and money than was necessary. He never appreciated what a blessed life he was living, but then again, they never do.
Part of the charm for Nick was that he enjoyed the full attention of his parents and family. Raised as an only child, life was sometimes a little lonely and boring but Nick was friends with close neighbors and was never really bored. However, being an only child meant that this lad was also a handful and was very spoilt…
Nick’s dad Theo was a hard-working man who owned a successful jewelry store in north central Austin. He and his wife Corey built the business up from nothing and put in many graveyard hours to do so. But they enjoyed working hard and especially liked the benefits that they received from a comfortable and consistent income.
According to a neighbor, who spoke about Nick, “He comes from a well-to-do family. He’s been given pretty much everything he wants or wanted as a young man,” said Brian. And with that, Nick was a high achiever himself, winning the gold medal in the 2014 WKSA World Tournament for Kuk Sool Won, a martial art…
Nick and his dad were close by all accounts, but Nick was also known to be a bit of a “mommy’s boy.” He was close with both his parents and that stood to reason as he was their only child. But often where there’s money there’s problem, and sadly the Shaughnessy family were no exception to that rule.
The Right Track
Nick was going off the tracks as he matured. Perhaps it was all the money and affluence in his life, perhaps it was something unrelated, however, Nick had seen better days. Having been close with his grandfather since childhood, he took Nick under his wing and tried to keep him on track, but in vain…
The neighbor, Brian, was a personal friend of Nick’s grandfather and he spoke about what a great support he was for the young lad, “He was involving him in his work, he was taking him on trips, he was taking him on different excursions around the community,” he said, but around a year ago, all that changed for the worse.
“A year ago, I said ‘how’s the grandson doing’ and he just kind of shrugged his shoulders and said ‘agh,’ and so I kind of took that to mean they weren’t in really close relationships anymore,” Brian said. And now that Nick no longer had that positive male support in his life, things went bad…
While Nick was having some personal issues in his life, he had met a nice girl and the couple wanted to settle down and start a family. Nick married Jaclyn in the summer of 2017, at a small ceremony near to their home. The couple moved into an apartment in College Station after Jaclyn started regularly attending the Texas A&M.
Cars and Politics
Nick had a wide range of interests, although almost all of them included money in some way. He was very active liking Facebook pages related to luxury car racing, while his main Facebook avatar was a Porsche logo, showing that Nick was seriously into fast cars. He also followed a bunch of Republican Party politicians and was apparently a big fan of Donald Trump.
It was early spring when Nick’s mother Corey made the call that no one ever wants to make to 911. An intruder had entered the house and shot and killed her husband in cold blood, as well as one of the family’s Rottweilers. When deputies arrived at the address on the 9000 block of Oliver Dr. they were faced with a gruesome and violent scene.
The police wasted no time in asking questions in order to try to get the bottom of this case as rapidly as possible. Among other things, she told the deputies that she had found Nick’s bedroom window unlocked, which he did often to gain easy access to his room from the yard. But how did the gunman know to leave after the murder via the window?
Investigators obviously questioned all relevant people, including an employee at the complex who told them something incriminating. The employee claimed that Nick had contacted her two weeks prior on social media, asking her if she wanted to make some “extra cash.” When she asked how, Nick’s response was telling, when he replied, “Illegal activities” and “Anything from strippers to murder.”
20K Per Head
Nick may have been desperate but he certainly wasn’t a savvy criminal. He offered the female employee “$20,000 a head” with a $15,000 incentive to kill both her parents. She told police that he followed up those amounts with skeleton emojis and at that point, she stopped contact with him…
Nick’s best friend Spencer was also questioned by the police. What he told them would change the course of the investigation radically; as Spencer informed the detectives that Nick had spoken about faking his own death for extortion money, and had told Spencer that he stood to receive more than a million dollars if his father died.
As part of their investigations, the police obtained a search warrant for Nick and Jaclyn’s apartment in College Station. What they found there shocked them to their core, and for good reason. They found a box of brass SIG Sauer.380-caliber bullets, the very same type of bullets which killed Theo, and what’s more, six rounds were missing from the box…
When investigators looked at computers they had seized, they found a chat between Nick and his wife with talk of a payment of “$50,000 for a job.” When they looked at Spencer’s iPad they also found chats with more mentions of large amounts of cash for something unspecified. When the police saw that Nick had suggested “plastic gloves ski masks” their suspicions were raised further.
After obtaining more evidence from ADT, the alarm company who serviced Theo’s home, investigators spoke to a confidential informant who told them that Nick had asked him to kill his parents, for cash, so that he could claim the money from their life insurance in order to profit financially. While the man didn’t take the job, police were now clear as to what had led to the death of Theo Shaughnessy…
Nick’s attorneys, Perry Minton and Rick Flores, released a statement defending their client, saying, “We have been working with the Shaughnessy family over the last several months as they mourn the loss of Ted. These allegations are not consistent in any way with the young man we have come to know. Nick has been living with his mother since this tragedy occurred. Ms. Shaughnessy stands firmly behind her son. We will review the evidence as it becomes available to us.” However, the evidence stacked against both Nick and Jaclyn was too compelling to be ignored.
Last month, Nick and his wife Jaclyn were both charged with criminal solicitation, with his bond set at $3 million, Jaclyn’s was set at an amount of $1 million. While the bonds are high for both of these suspects, criminal solicitation is a first-degree felony which has the potential for many years behind bars without the possibility of parole in more extreme cases such as this one.