Man accused of shooting Austin jeweler charged with capital murder

Crime

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Johnny Leon III has been indicted on a capital murder charge for the March 2 murder of Austin jeweler Theodore Shaughnessy.

Leon, along with Shaughnessy’s son Nicolas and daughter-in-law Jaclyn Edison, were already charged with criminal solicitation of capital murder. Nicolas was indicted on a capital murder charge in August.

The Travis County Sheriff’s Office announced the grand jury indictment of Leon on the capital murder charge on Monday.

The indictment states Leon, 21, shot Theodore Shaughnessy in exchange for payment or promise of payment from Shaughnessy’s son.

Charlie Baird, who is one of the attorneys representing Leon, said in a statement, “We asked the State to seek an indictment so we can advance the case and prove his innocence.” 

In July, the sheriff’s office announced that Leon had been arrested in connection to the murder with bond set at $3 million.

“Our investigation revealed that Mr. Leon was involved with Nicolas Shaughnessy in the planning and the execution of the incident that occurred March 2 of 2018 when Theodore Shaughnessy was murdered,” Sheriff Sally Hernandez said at the time.

Theodore Shaughnessy, 55, was founded dead with multiple gunshot wounds by his wife around 4:45 a.m. on March 2. His wife, who also faced a hail of gunfire, survived the alleged murder-for-hire plot unharmed. Court documents said Shaughnessy’s wife, Corey, returned fire at the shooter until she ran out of bullets.

Investigators said the security system for the Shaughnessy home on Oliver Drive, in southwest Travis County, had been accessed remotely three times the night of the shooting, and key surveillance videos had been deleted.

Nicolas was the only person who could have accessed the system at that time, investigators said. The computer used to delete the videos was traced back to Nicolas’ home in College Station, according to court documents.

A detective met with a confidential informant on May 29, 2018. The informant told the detective that Nicolas asked him to kill his parents in exchange for $10,000 a month.

The younger Shaughnessy was the sole beneficiary of $2 million in the event of his parent’s death.

His wife, Jaclyn, bonded out of jail, but Nicolas remains in custody on a $3 million bond. Both are 19 years old.

Nicolas Shaughnessy’s attorneys said in May that his mother “stands firmly behind her son.” 

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