Girlfriend guilty of plotting wealthy Newport Beach man's death
An Orange County woman was found guilty Monday of plotting the 1994 murder of her wealthy Newport Beach boyfriend, part of an apparent effort to cash in on the man's $1-million life insurance policy.
A Superior Court jury in Santa Ana found Nanette Packard-McNeal, 46, guilty of murder with special circumstances for murder for financial gain. Prosecutors said Packard-McNeal and her lover, a former NFL player, plotted the murder. She is expected to be sentenced May 18.
Prosecutors said Packard-McNeal conspired with former New England Patriots linebacker Eric Naposki to kill businessman Bill McLaughlin, 55, with whom Packard-McNeal was living, in December 1994.
In a separate trial, Naposki was convicted of killing McLaughlin; he faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. His sentencing is scheduled for the same day as Packard-McNeal’s.
Portrayed as a femme fatale and manipulator, Packard-McNeal was living with McLaughlin and spending — and stealing — his money while dating other men.
Prosecutor Matt Murphy said Packard-McNeal had to kill McLaughlin because it was only a matter of time before he realized she was cheating on him or stealing his money.
Packard-McNeal’s defense attorney, Mick Hill, argued that his client had the perfect setup with McLaughlin — he was rich, was largely absent and owned a nice home — and she wouldn’t want to ruin it.
— Britney Barnes and Joseph Serna
Photo: Nanette Packard-McNeal. Credit: Daily Pilot