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Couple Charged In Landlord Murder Suffered Severe Financial Problems

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ASPEN, Colo. (CBS4)- The couple charged with the murder of Aspen socialite Nancy Pfister suffered severe financial problems in recent years.

William F. Styler III, 65, and Nancy Christine Styler, 62, appeared in Pitken County court on Tuesday and face first degree murder and conspiracy charges. They are accused of killing the woman whose home they had been renting. Nancy Pfister, 57, was a popular member of the Aspen community and was found dead in her home last week.

Before she was killed, Pfister posted on her Facebook page that the Stylers had stopped paying rent to her while she was out of the country.

Dr. William Styler was seen outside the Pitkin County Courthouse in Aspen on Tuesday looking frail in a wheelchair.

Pictures of the couple from just a couple of years ago suggest a different lifestyle.

“I just had to take a moment to gather my thoughts I was so stunned,” said attorney Paul Gordon. “They’re delightful people, absolutely delightful people.”

William and Nancy Styler (credit: The Styler Family)

William and Nancy Styler (credit: The Styler Family)

Gordon represented the Stylers in a civil suit filed against another attorney, John G. Powell, who Gordon said fraudulently gouged the Stylers out of much of their life savings.

Powell had originally represented William Styler in a dispute over software that Styler designed.

“He had actually paid that lawyer around $612,000 in attorney’s fees,” said Gordon.

Friends said the Stylers had to sell their long-time home in Greenwood Village to pay the staggering bill.

“Honestly in the 21 years I’ve been doing legal malpractice work he is the only client, having come to me, that paid the full bill,” said Gordon.

Gordon said the Stylers were such honest, ethical people that they paid the bill to avoid getting into any legal trouble.

It’s hard for him to imagine how the Stylers got into their current criminal trouble, facing possible first-degree murder charges in the death of Pfister.

Nancy Pfister (credit: CBS)

Nancy Pfister (credit: CBS)

“My reaction is a little bit… do they really have the right people here?” said Gordon.

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