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Texas jeweler and dog killed in targeted hit involving son, daughter-in-law

Shootout at the Shaughnessys'
Shootout at the Shaughnessys' 41:40

When Travis County Sheriff's detectives Paul Salo and James Moore arrived to investigate a shooting at Ted and Corey Shaughnessy's Austin, Texas, home early on March 2, 2018, they first thought it might be a robbery gone wrong.

Det. Paul Salo: It looked as though there was a home invasion … and a homeowner was … killed. 

Inside the sprawling, suburban home it looked like a battlefield. Ted Shaughnessy, 55, lay dead in a pool of blood near the kitchen table. 

Det. James Moore: He was shot in the head, the back, the thigh, and the buttocks… 

One of the family's two pet Rottweilers, Bart, had been shot to death, as well. There was broken window glass everywhere, bullets lodged in the walls and casings all over the floor. Authorities noticed they were not all the same type.

Det. Paul Salo: We had .40 caliber and .380 … so that told us that we had two shooters …

Shaughnessy crime scene evidence
"Ted sits up in bed … and he grabbed his gun … to go see what it was," said Corey Shaughnessy. "I hadn't even gotten my head back on the pillow … before I heard the first gunshot …  And then there was a barrage of gunfire." Travis County Sheriff's Office

Corey would tell police she and Ted kept about 20 guns in the home, and said she'd used her .357 revolver to shoot back at the attackers.

Det. James Moore: It was a hail of gunfire.

Investigators had noticed a single, wide-open ground floor window around the side of the house and wondered if the intruders had used it to get in.

Det. Paul Salo: Somebody took the screen off and set it next to the window outside.

That open window led into an unoccupied bedroom where, inside a drawer, police found what seemed like an unlikely coincidence.

Det. Paul Salo: There's a .40 caliber gun box in that drawer. 

Det. James Moore: It's missing out of the box.

Jim Axelrod: Well, hang on, .40 caliber is one of the calibers that you were just describing.

Det. Paul Salo: Yes. 

It meant the Shaughnessy's empty gun box could have held a pistol that one of the intruders used and had ejected bullet casings near the victim.

Det. James Moore: That information gets passed to me while I'm outside.

Outside, near Moore, first responders were looking after Corey Shaughnessy.

Det. James Moore: Corey's hysterical.

Ted and Corey Shaughnessy
Ted and Corey Shaughnessy Corey Shaughnessy

Corey would tell police she had not seen the attackers' faces. But she did have a hunch about why they'd come. 

Corey Shaughnessy: Being a jeweler … you might someday be a target.

Jim Axelrod: When you hear they own a jewelry store, what does that prompt in your minds?

Det. James Moore: Automatically a motive.

Jim Axelrod: Someone … figuring there was some safe with a bunch of jewelry.

Det. James Moore: Absolutely. That's right. 

Corey broke the news by phone to the Shaughnessys' son Nick, then 19, who lived two hours away with his girlfriend Jackie in College Station, Texas. They immediately drove to Austin, arriving about 8 a.m.

Det. Paul Salo: Nick comes over and he's — he's emotional … he asks me what happened.

Nick, Jackie and Corey all agreed to help the investigation in any way possible. Corey allowed police to search her phone and, though Nick said he hadn't been in Austin for about a month, he and Jackie did the same. All three also agreed to answer questions at the station.

NICK SHAUGHNESSY (police interview): I'm trying to think of anything that could be helpful.

Det. Paul Salo: Our goal was to just try to get as much information as possible.

COREY SHAUGHNESSY (police interview): I — I didn't hear anything until the dog started barking.

But Corey says the more police questioned her in the coming days … the more a traumatic situation went from bad to worse.

COREY SHAUGHNESSY (police interview): I'm trying to do anything I can to — to help.

She says they were not treating her like a victim.

Corey Shaughnessy: I was extremely angry at the sheriff's department.

Investigators still weren't sure if the murder was part of a random attack, a jewel heist gone bad, or whether it was a targeted assassination. They weren't finding any relevant unidentified prints at the scene, so they had to wonder if their sole surviving victim, Corey Shaughnessy, was actually a suspect.

Det. James Moore: She's the only person in the house. And we have her husband who has been shot to death … we know that she owns firearms. … So it's obviously an option for us. 

They called her in for a series of interviews. For the last one, she brought a lawyer.

DET. SALO (police interview): You know, I didn't know Ted. It's not right that somebody killed him.


DET. SALO: And I want to find him.


Jim Axelrod: You got a distraught wife. You got a dead husband. You have to ask about the marriage, don't you?

Det. James Moore: Yes.

COREY SHAUGHNESSY (police interview): Ted was the people person. He was the front part of the store.

Investigators learned Corey and Ted had met in the early 80s at a video arcade in Phoenix. They'd quickly discovered they had a lot in common, including a love of jewelry and, eventually, of each other. They married and opened Gallerie Jewelers.

Corey Shaughnessy: Everything seemed to be just about perfect.

As the jewelry business grew, Ted and Corey had decided to grow their family too. In 2000, they adopted Nick at 16 months old from an orphanage in Ukraine.

Corey Shaughnessy: It was just instant love.

Jim Axelrod: It was?

Corey Shaughnessy: Yeah. Instant.

Corey says they all bonded even before bringing him home.

Corey Shaughnessy: There were animal crackers involved.

Jim Axelrod: Skillful distribution of animal crackers?

Corey Shaughnessy (laughs) Yes, yes … and by the time we left, we were a family.

She says Ted had a knack for helping people express their love with a sparkle.

Det. James Moore: Everybody loved Ted. Didn't have any enemies.

By the time of the murder, the Shaughnessy's were worth millions. But maybe even more valuable to them, they counted some of their customers as close friends.

Corey Shaughnessy: We were very happy. 

Nick and Corey Shaughnessy
Nick and Corey Shaughnessy Corey Shaughnessy

For Corey, being a parent was worth its weight in gold.

Jim Axelrod: Nicholas had … everything a kid could want.

Corey Shaughnessy: Yes.

Jim Axelrod: What was he into? 

Corey Shaughnessy: He liked animals, and he loved cars.

Especially, fast ones. His father drove race cars for fun and often took him to the track. 

Corey Shaughnessy: He loved putting on Ted's helmet and his racing gloves and — and all of those things.

In high school, she says her son found another love — her name was Jackie Edison. After her parents divorced, she had moved from New Jersey to Austin to live with her father. Nick brought her to meet his parents in 2016.

Corey Shaughnessy: It was an awkward dinner.

But Corey says Jackie eventually won them over, and before long, she was spending so much time in the Shaughnessys' house, they actually let her move in.

Jim Axelrod: Did you ... settle into a — OK, a serious girlfriend seems to be part of Nick's life and she's OK?

Corey Shaughnessy: I did. She was alright.

Nick Shaughnessy and Jackie Edison.
Nick Shaughnessy and Jackie Edison. Corey Shaughnessy

In August 2017, Nick and Jackie moved out to start a new life in College Station — she in school, he as a day trader, with his parents' financial backing. Ted and Corey would have less than a year to enjoy their empty nest before that horrible night in March. Police stayed on the scene for hours trying to process all the evidence.

Amy Meredith: I was actually on call … when the murder occurred. 

Amy Meredith was an assistant district attorney and says police asked her to come help them process and preserve the unusual request. She arrived around 11 am…and after looking around, began to believe as they did... that Ted Shaughnessy probably knew whoever had attacked him.

Amy Meredith: This was not a stranger. This was not a stranger killing. 

Meredith was sure the home was just too big and too dark for a pair of random robbers or jewel thief wannabees to find their way around. Maybe even more importantly.

Amy Meredith: There was nothing stolen.

Nothing from that safe — and no valuables missing from the rest of the house.

Jim Axelrod: So everything for you pointed to inside job?

Amy Meredith: Yes. Without a doubt.


Corey Shaughnessy's frustration with investigators was growing.

She says she'd known from the start that she was a suspect in her husband's murder. She says she needed money for the business in the following weeks, and it didn't help when she tried to cash in his million-dollar life insurance policy.

Corey Shaughnessy: I was the only beneficiary. That could only mean that they suspected me. 

Jim Axelrod: Let me just ask, did you have anything to do with this?

Corey Shaughnessy: Absolutely not.

But Meredith says Corey had started raising red flags immediately after leaving the scene. Within hours of the murder, she reportedly stated there would be no funeral and inquired about having the house cleaned.

Amy Meredith: We had to make sure that she did not have any involvement.

But Corey wasn't the only member of Ted's family who was raising suspicion. The Shaughnessy's son Nick had been more than 100 miles away at the time of the murder. At the scene that morning, he'd been emotional. But what struck detective Salo was one of Nick's first questions.

Det. Paul Salo: I tell him, it looks like somebody came into the home, and shot your dad to death.

Jim Axelrod: And how did he absorb that news?

Det. Paul Salo: He asked me, did he suffer?

Jim Axelrod: Was that an odd question?

Det. Paul Salo: It definitely struck me as odd, yes.

Even more so, police say, because, as the morning wore on, Nick became much less interested in speaking with police than with the reporters who had started showing up.

Det. James Moore: Nick and Jackie continuously tried to talk to the media … we asked him to — to stop and to stay in the scene.

Shaughnessy crime scene evidence
At the scene, Nick Shaughnessy did something investigators thought was odd. The open side window was not visible from the street. Without being told it was open or that investigators thought it might have been the entry point, Nick walked right over to it. Travis County Sheriff's Office

And then Nick did something really odd, says Moore. He walked directly over to examine that ground floor, wide open side window. The room it led to had once been his.

Det. James Moore: Him going to that side of the house to look specifically at that window which you can't see from just the front of the house, so for him to know that that was even involved, he did not have that information.

Jim Axelrod: How does he know the entry point unless he was involved in creating the entry point?

Det. James Moore: Sometimes people will get information from crosstalk with detectives or law enforcement and … so I — I didn't automatically get super suspicious, but it was catching my attention. 

Something on Nick's phone had caught their attention as well: an app that gave him access over his parents' alarm. Corey told them the family often chose not to arm the system, and that it had been switched off that night. But authorities noticed something in the account history.

Det. James Moore: There was an activation for an open window…

Det. Paul Salo: The time of the window being opened … was 4:27 that morning.

Det. James Moore: Following that was glass break activations. We believe that's when the bullets started breaking the glass in the house.

Amy Meredith: That's when Ted died, that's when the shots were being fired.

Jim Axelrod: Was this important to have?

Det. James Moore: Extremely.

Police also saw something that seemed important in Jackie Edison's behavior.

Det. James Moore: We were gonna do a gunshot residue test on their hands … we then separated them and at that time Jackie broke down, hysterically.

Jim Axelrod: And what'd you make of it?

Det. James Moore: That was a major red flag for me. … we knew there was something more to this at that point.

Detectives question Nick Shaughnessy
Nick Shaughnessy being questioned by Travis County detectives. Travis County DA's Office

DETECTIVE: A woman officer put your mom on the phone and then your mom told you what happened?

NICK SHAUGHNESSY: Yeah. … she is like, "someone came in the house. There was an exchange of gunfire." I believe she fired a shot and then she ran to the closet.

In questioning later that day, Nick and Jackie reminded police they'd been at their home in College Station when the shooting happened.

JACKIE EDISON (police interview): We both moved to College Station, and he just works from home.

A few days later, investigators got a search warrant.

Det. James Moore: Once we get into the apartment we're going through it, we're finding ammunition...

Though common among gun owners, the ammunition was the same brand and caliber that was found at the crime scene. And investigators were about to find proof the couple was keeping secrets.

Det. James Moore:  We find a marriage certificate for Nick and Jaclyn.

Jim Axelrod: You discovered that Nick and Jackie were married by searching Nick's apartment?

Det. James Moore: Yep.

Jim Axelrod: In all of the conversation you were having … they never said that they were married?

Det. James Moore: No.

A teenage friend of Nick's named Spencer Patterson, who'd been certified as a minister online, had married them eight months earlier. Police weren't the only ones surprised. 

Jim Axelrod: You and Ted never knew? 

Corey Shaughnessy: No.

Corey Shaughnessy says Nick and Jackie didn't tell her about their clandestine marriage until after the murder.

Corey Shaughnessy: And I told them, I said … "this is not — you shouldn't have done this. You're too young.

Trying to be a good mom, she says she promised to help them plan a proper wedding.

Corey Shaughnessy: I said … "you need to do it the right way."

Corey had ample opportunity to make sure it happened, because, over the next few days, Nick and Jackie moved back into her house.

Corey Shaughnessy: We were planning the engagement party. We had the guest list. Jackie was picking out invitations.

That's especially chilling, because while police initially had looked at all three for the murder, they now suspected just two — and that Nick and Jackie had also targeted Corey. But it was still only a working theory.

Jim Axelrod: You can't say anything to Corey?

Det. Paul Salo: No.

Det. James Moore: That — that's a hard line to walk.

Jim Axelrod:  If you have two people who planned her killing now living with her, are you worried about Corey's safety?

Det. James Moore: Of course, of course.

Corey Shaughnessy
Corey Shaughnessy CBS News

But Corey Shaughnessy says what worried her was the possibility authorities were trying to frame her son, who by now was working in his father's place at the jewelry store.

Corey Shaughnessy: There's a set of circumstances that the police are trying to — to — to make work in … the easiest way that they can.

On March 10, 2018, she hired her son the best defense attorney she could find.

Corey Shaughnessy: You could have told me aliens landed on the front yard, and … I would have believed that before I would've believed that Nicholas and Jackie planned to have us killed. 


Corey Shaughnessy knew police were suspicious of Nick and Jackie, but she says she had no reason to think they were right. After all, she says they'd been wrong about her.

Corey Shaughnessy: The last thing that I would ever do would be kill my husband … and … I thought, well, if they think I did it … it's not a stretch for them to think Nicolas did it. 

But the closer police looked, the more incriminating evidence they seemed to find that Nick and Jackie had planned to have both Shaughnessys killed. While phone records showed Nick had been more than 100 miles away at the time of the murder, they also showed he was lying when he said he hadn't been to Austin for a month.

Det. Paul Salo: We ultimately see … cellphone usage in Austin on February 28th, which is just two days before Ted ends up getting killed.

Investigators wondered if he had been in town making final preparations. There were text messages on Nick and Jackie's phones that police say showed a suspicious conversation.

Jim Axelrod: How important was the text message that he had sent out February 23, 24? … Nick is saying he's "working on it."

Det. Paul Salo: And Jackie's response to the text message was, "do they want 50K or not?" And she says, "we can't afford to pay half before."

In another exchange, Nick asks her to withdraw money from her account: "so if it happens … cash in hand."  

Det. Paul Salo: They do make this withdrawal.

Jackie withdrew $1,000 from the bank just days before the murder. Authorities suspected it was no coincidence. Then, in May 2018 , they talked to the man who had officiated Nick and Jackie's wedding – that high school friend, Spencer Patterson.

Det. James Moore: Trying to get ahold of Spencer was kind of difficult.

At first, investigators believed Patterson might be a suspect. But when they finally reached him, he proved to be a critical witness instead. He told them just before the murder, Nick had talked about coming into $8 million with Ted and Corey gone.

Jim Axelrod: Nick had put a dollar sign on the lives of his parents.

Det. Paul Salo: Yes.

Det. James Moore: Yep.

Jim Axelrod: That's chilling.

Det. Paul Salo: It is.

Patterson showed them text messages that were even more chilling.

Det. James Moore: There's also communication between Spencer and Nicolas, where Nicolas was trying to hire him to kill a family. 

"Just walk in and shoot a family," writes Nick. "Steal all their s—-, no mask needed cuz they'll all be dead." 

Det. James Moore: Spencer didn't want to go along with it. But Nick still pitched the idea.

Police would come to believe Nick Shaughnessy and Jackie Edison had masterminded the attack and on May 29, 2018, authorities arrested them for criminal solicitation in the murder of Ted Shaughnessy.

Police cleared Patterson, and on May 29, 2018, they arrested Nick Shaughnessy and Jackie Edison for criminal solicitation. Corey couldn't believe it.

Corey Shaughnessy: I'm still under the assumption that … he's being wrongly accused.

For months, Corey had stood by Nick. But she told us that when she read the arrest affidavits and saw the evidence, her rock-solid belief in his innocence began to crumble. 

Corey Shaughnessy: I got to where I understood that yes, they were involved in some way.

But as a mother, she says she still couldn't convince herself they'd deliberately tried to kill anyone.

Corey Shaughnessy: I was then hoping that they had maybe gotten caught up in something in College Station where maybe Nicolas owed someone money or maybe there was some sort of a strange drug thing or maybe he told the wrong person that we were jewelers.

Confident Nick and Jackie were behind the attack, police hoped some time in jail might make them come clean about who had actually pulled the trigger. For the moment though, neither one was talking.

Amy Meredith: The next step was … who were the actual shooters and how do we figure this out?

The evidence trail had essentially run cold.

Det. James Moore: So we kinda hit a stall point.

In early July, four months after the murder, Moore decided to review some security video from Nick and Jackie's porch, recorded just two days before the attack.

Det. James Moore: I see two individuals show up to his front door.

Security footage from Nick and Jackie's front porch proved to be a major turn in the case. Recorded just two days before the attack, it shows Nick Shaughnessy, left, greeting two men at the front door. Travis County Sheriff's Office

Moore says he noticed something about one of the men that made him freeze the video — something he was wearing.

Det. James Moore: A green … Andersen T-shirt.

Jim Axelrod: Window company.

Det. James Moore: A window company.

Jim Axelrod: This feels like a break, and it only happens because you isolated a frame of the video from the security camera?

Det. James Moore: Yeah.

Moore and Salo drove to the window company where their hard work ran into more good luck. By sheer coincidence, an employee's daughter said she'd actually met the man in the freeze frame. Apparently, he'd only worked there for a few days — four years earlier.

Det. Paul Salo: And this woman still remembered his name.

Jim Axelrod: Sergeant, what are the odds of a hit like this on the identity?

Det. James Moore: It was … crazy that we got that break.

His name was Cameron Vosmek and he wasn't home that day. But his wife answered the door — and quickly got their attention.

Det. Paul Salo: "I know why you're here."

Det. Paul Salo: "That, kid who … hired somebody to — to kill his jewelry store parents."

Jim Axelrod: Hang on. She doesn't know who you guys are. You identify yourselves as detectives and she says, "I know why you're here?"

Det. Paul Salo: Yes.

She said a few months earlier, a man named Johnny Leon had asked her husband to commit murder for money. But he turned him down. Police ruled out Vosmek as a suspect. But Leon turned out to be the other person in the security video from Nick and Jackie's porch. When they brought him in for questioning, he told them he was no murderer. But he admitted Nick had tried to hire him.

JOHNNY LEON: (police interview) I'm not gonna lie to you, when someone offers you 100K, you're gonna think about it ...

DET. MOORE: He's luring you into this to commit murder.


But police were convinced that Leon had taken the bait.

DET. MOORE (police interview): I'm just telling you; we know you're involved in this. We know what happened …

JOHNNY LEON: You know I'm involved?

DET. MOORE: Absolutely. There is no doubt.

Leon was arrested for capital murder, and on his phone, police found evidence he may not have acted alone. There was a flurry of contacts around the time of the killing with a Fort Worth man named Arieon Smith. They also discovered both men had arrest records. In fact, the two had been arrested together for drugs a year earlier.

Det. Paul Salo: Detective Moore and I interviewed him. …he did admit that he had met Nick.

Det. Paul Salo: He gave us a lot of good information.

Smith opened up about the details of that night and broke down in the process.

DET. MOORE (police interview): You're the only person that's showing regret.

ARIEON SMITH: I don't understand how, how could you kill somebody and not have any emotion about it? And you actually killed them. I was just in the situation. … I'm — I'm — I'm devastated. I cannot sleep at night.

Prosecutors were closer than ever to having everything they needed to make their case.

Amy Meredith:  We've got enough. … Now, let's go to trial.

That's something Nick Shaughnessy told "48 Hours" he'd wanted to avoid.


After police arrested the last of their four suspects, Arieon Smith, Det. Salo says Smith told them he wasn't just there for Ted's murder.

ARIEON SMITH (police interview): Yes, I was there.

Smith acknowledged firing the fatal shot, and then made a stunning request —

ARIEON SMITH (police interview): I request the death penalty. 

— the death penalty.

ARIEON SMITH (police interview): I killed somebody, I deserve to die. Simple as that. 

He also told police where to find the murder weapon. It was the .40 caliber pistol missing from that box they'd found in Nick's old bedroom.

Jim Axelrod: The .40 caliber gun that killed Ted was Ted's.

Corey Shaughnessy: Yes.

For a mother who'd struggled for months to keep faith in her son, it felt like the last straw.

Corey Shaughnessy: Too much had happened … that pointed to Nicolas and Jackie having involvement.

And Corey was horrified to realize she'd spent months sheltering the very people who'd planned to have Ted and her murdered that night.

Jim Axelrod: What a chilling thought — two people who tried to have you killed and they're living in your home.

Corey Shaughnessy: Very. It's … very chilling.

Corey Shaughnessy: I bought all the groceries. I paid all the bills. I bought her clothing.

Jim Axelrod: This is diabolical.

Corey Shaughnessy: Absolutely … they thought they had gotten away with it.

Jaclyn Edison questioning
Jaclyn Edison bring questioned by detectives. Travis County DA's Office

DETECTIVE (police interview): Do you prefer Jackie or Jaclyn?


After their arrest, it took just a couple of weeks for Jackie to blame Nick.

DETECTIVE: Did Nicolas hire somebody... to kill his parents?


And Jackie seemed to know why he'd done it. She says Nick was in desperate financial straits, with a failing day trading business and thousands in overdue loans including at least one from Corey.

JACKIE EDISON (police interview): I think his mom gave him $30,000 … and she expected money in return, but he wasn't paying her.

After her cooperation, authorities released Jackie on a reduced bond. And prosecutor Amy Meredith resolved to go after Nick for the maximum.

Amy Meredith: We're going to try Nick Shaughnessy for capital murder.

Jim Axelrod: At this point, were you prepared to testify against Nick?

Corey Shaughnessy: Yes.

Johnny Leon, Nicolas Shaughnessy and Aerion Smith
From left, Johnny Leon, Nicolas Shaughnessy and Aerion Smith were charged with capital murder. Travis County DA's Office

Nick Shaughnessy and the two alleged hit men were charged with capital murder. But by the spring of 2021, Amy Meredith had left her job as assistant district attorney. And there was a new DA, José Garza, whose office made the men an offer: avoid a possible death sentence by pleading guilty to a reduced charge of murder and serve 35 years with the possibility of parole. Leon and Smith agreed, and Corey wrote to Nick to suggest he do the same.

Corey Shaughnessy: If I could speak to Ted, I think that would have been his choice.

Nick Shaughnessy accepted the deal. He could be released when he is 36. In the summer of 2023, "48 Hours" visited him in prison near Houston.

Jim Axelrod: Did you hire people to go kill your parents?

Nick Shaughnessy: Yes, Jackie and I participated in multiple aspects to kill my …

Jim Axelrod: Never mind participated in multiple aspects. Did you pay these two men to go kill your parents?

Nick Shaughnessy: Yes.

Texas man says he’s sorry for paying hit men to kill his parents by 48 Hours on YouTube

Nick told us he's sorry for all of it.

Nick Shaughnessy: I know … that I'm here because of those actions.

Jim Axelrod: Nick at the end of the day, are you sorry for what you did or are you sorry that you got caught?

Nick Shaughnessy: I'm most truly, passionately sorry, for what I did.

And Nick told us he never would have done it – if not for Jackie.

Jim Axelrod: It was a very toxic relationship.

Although he stood to inherit his parents' money eventually, he told us he wasn't prepared to wait.

Jim Axelrod: Were you at all thinking … "what am I doing?:

Nick Shaughnessy: Of course. … it was always in the back of my head. like red flags — like stop, don't go.

Jim Axelrod: The back of your head. Why not the front of your head?

Nick Shaughnessy: I guess the validation or approval from Jackie.

It is hard to know how much Jackie Edison should be blamed or what punishment she deserves. And jurors won't get to decide. She too got a deal from the office of the new DA. For pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit capital murder by terror threat or other felony — a jail sentence of 120 days and 10 years' probation.

Corey Shaughnessy: It's astounding. It's absolutely astounding.

She began serving her time in June 2023.

Corey Shaughnessy: It is an outright dismissal of everything that I went through as a victim. And it's a dismissal of Ted's life.

Jim Axelrod: Three are doing 35 years, one is doing 120 days. Corey says that's outrageous. … What are your thoughts?

Amy Meredith: I … had no involvement once I left the district attorney's office on Jackie's case.

Amy Meredith was working elsewhere before prosecutors offered the plea deals. Corey's feelings aren't lost on her.

Jim Axelrod: Do you understand her rage?

Amy Meredith: I … absolutely understand that she is upset.

Corey is so upset that when the new prosecutors asked her to appear at Jackie's 2023 plea hearing, she refused – instead, recording a video at home to be played in court:

COREY SHAUGHNESSY (video court statement:  I'm alive because your plan to have me murdered … didn't succeed.

COREY SHAUGHNESSY (video court statement): You are a monster. You are evil and everyone needs to know it.

COREY SHAUGHNESSY (video court statement): You knew what was about to happen, and yet you sat home and did nothing because you wanted it to happen …

We wanted to ask Jackie Edison about that and other things, but she declined our request for an interview. On the day she was released from jail, our producer Jenna Jackson approached her.


Corey and Nick Shaughnessy haven't spoken directly since his 2018 arrest.

Jim Axelrod: When you look in the mirror, do you see evil?

Nick Shaughnessy: My mom stated that. Me being evil. … I don't see evil in me.

These days, it's safe to say they don't see eye to eye. In fact, there may be only one thing they do agree on.

Corey Shaughnessy: Jackie is not a victim.

Jim Axelrod: This is a fifty-fifty thing?

Nick Shaughnessy: Most definitely

Jim Axelrod: Did Jaclyn Edison get away with murder?

Corey Shaughnessy: Absolutely.

On Oct. 17, 2023, Jackie Edison walked out of an Austin-area jail after serving her four-month sentence.

Jenna Jackson: Hey, Jaclyn.

We'd been asking for an interview for months.

Jackie Edison: I don't wanna do any interviews.

But "48 Hours" producer Jenna Jackson had some questions for her anyway.

Jaclyn Edison tells “48 Hours” 120 days in jail was appropriate for her role in Austin murder plot by 48 Hours on YouTube

Jenna Jackson: Nick got 35 years, the hit men got the same. You got 120 days. … Are you getting away with murder?

Jackie Edison: No. I think that — I think that it's fair. I think it accurately reflects the level of involvement.

Jenna Jackson: Corey and Nick have both told us is that … you are a partner in this murder plot.

Jackie Edison Yeah … I think Nick is — is saying whatever he has to say to kind of clear his name. Um, and Corey is very much in denial about what really happened.

Jenna Jackson: You weren't in on this plot?

Jackie Edison: I was not in on it. No.

Jenna Jackson :Didn't get money out to pay the hit men?

Jackie Edison: No. No ma'am.

Det. James Moore: Is she innocent? Absolutely not.

Amy Meredith: No … She knew. She knew what he was trying to do.

Det. James Moore: She could have stopped this at any time.

JACKIE EDISON (police interview: I tried to stop him.

But investigators say there is no evidence Jackie ever tried to stop the murder.

Det. James Moore: She's no princess in this.

And according to what Nick told authorities, Jackie had been making plans for spending the Shaughnessys' money.

Corey Shaughnessy: I found out that Jackie … already picked out the car she was going to buy her mother with the money that they made.

Jim Axelrod: Off of the murder of you and Ted?

Corey Shaughnessy: Yes.

Det. James Moore: I'm not defending her by any degree.

Though she did eventually help them make their case against the person they identified as the key culprit.

Det. James Moore: They're both to blame. Who took more action? … it's Nick.

Det. Paul Salo: You take Nick out of this you don't have the incident.

Jim Axelrod: You take Jackie out?

Det. James Moore: It still happens.

Jim Axelrod: Do you understand Corey's frustration?

Det. James Moore: I do.

Det. Paul Salo: Absolutely.

Det. James Moore: We empathize with her.

But Moore and Salo say Jackie's plea deal wasn't their call.

Det. James Moore: Our job ended at the arrest and there's not a single step further that we can take it.

We wanted to ask DA Jose Garza exactly why Edison got 120 days, after the other three got 35 years, but he wouldn't agree to an interview. A spokesperson for the district attorney sent "48 Hours" a statement saying, "Our office takes acts of violence seriously and is committed to holding people who commit violent crimes accountable." The statement also said Edison is on 10 years' probation and if she violates the terms, she could face 20 years in prison.  

Corey Shaughnessy says a full explanation from authorities would have helped her make sense of something that has always struck her as impossibly wrong.

Jim Axelrod: So no one's ever explained to you why this enormous disparity … in sentence?

Corey Shaughnessy: No, absolutely not.

Nick Shaughnessy: It's a … slap in the face to my mother.

Jim Axelrod: Now you're concerned about your mother?

Nick Shaughnessy: Most definitely.

True or not, Nick Shaughnessy told us he hopes someday Corey will agree to speak with him.

Jim Axelrod: What would you say to her?

Nick Shaughnessy:  I wish I could tell my mom how truly sorry I am, that this is not something I'm proud of and I failed her as a son.

Corey Shaughnessy (watching video of Nick's apology): It means nothing to me.

Jim Axelrod: Do you think he believes it? What he's saying?

Corey Shaughnessy: I don't know that person. I have no idea who Nicolas Shaughnessy is.

And Corey says there is no point responding to an apology she was never meant to hear.

Corey Shaughnessy: In my mind, I am supposed to be dead. And so, I'm a ghost and ghosts can't speak.

But even after a betrayal no mother should ever have to see…Corey still can't bring herself to condemn her son altogether.

Nick, Corey and Terd Shaughnessy
Nick, Corey and Terd Shaughnessy Corey Shaughnessy

Jim Axelrod: Do you still love your son?

Corey Shaughnessy: I love the person I knew to be my son before this happened.

Jim Axelrod: You love that 8-year-old boy racing cars with his dad.

Corey Shaughnessy: Yes.

She knows that boy is gone forever and so is the life she and Ted tried to build around him.

Corey Shaughnessy: Nicolas and Jackie destroyed my entire world. … They took my husband ... They took memories, they took my business … they took everything I had that I cared about.

But, now living out of state under a different name, Corey is determined to make the most of every day.

Corey Shaughnessy: It'll always be there. It'll always be a part of who I am. But I've been given life. And I need to do something with it.

As a parole requirement, for the next 10 years, on the anniversary of Ted Shaughnessy's murder, Jaclyn Edison must spend the night in jail.    

"48 Hours" Post Mortem Podcast

Listen to this episode on ART19

Listen as host Anne-Marie Green, contributor Jim Axelrod and producer Jenna Jackson discuss Corey's emotional journey to realizing her own son had hired hit men to kill her and her husband for money.  

Produced by Josh Yager. Jenna Jackson and Ryan N. Smith are the development producers. Shaheen Tokhi is the associate producer.  Anthony Venditti is the content research manager. Atticus Brady and Diana Modica are the editors. Patti Aronofsky is the senior producer. Nancy Kramer is the executive story editor. Judy Tygard is the executive producer.

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