The personal ad in a singles magazine said, "I know how to take care of my man if he knows how to take care of me." The headline read, "Wealthy Men Only." A beautiful blonde woman gazed seductively out of an accompanying picture and it captivated Bill McLaughlin, enough that he picked up the phone and called. He certainly had the qualifications — a multimillionaire inventor who had his own private plane for frequent jaunts to Las Vegas and two waterfront homes in tony Newport Beach, Calif. Divorced, lonely, and looking for a companion, McLaughlin was captivated by the 5-foot-6-inch woman with the swimsuit-model body. Her perfect manicure, bleached hair, designer clothes and expensive jewelry hinted that Nanette Ann Packard was used to the finer things in life.
But nothing comes without a price. Eventually McLaughlin's idyllic life was turned upside down as the woman of his dreams and purported fiancée was suspected of draining his bank account, cheating on him, and then spending months plotting his murder.
When McLaughlin, 55, turned up dead on Dec. 15, 1994, family members looked no further than his live-in-lover-turned-business-associate and her new boyfriend. But suspicion and proof are two different things and the case would languish another 15 years before police gathered enough clues to solve one of Orange County's most sensational cases.