BRENTWOOD, N.H. — William Argie is set to spend the rest of his life in prison without the possibility of parole for the 2019 murder of his wife, Maureen Gaudet Argie.
Following emotional courtroom remarks from Maureen’s loved ones, Argie, 49, announced that he intends to appeal the guilty verdict, claiming several errors in his trial.
He testified that he found his 41-year-old wife dead in their Londonderry home April 4, 2019. Jurors, however, were in quick agreement that he was guilty of first-degree murder and falsifying evidence.
Prosecutors pinned Argie’s motive to his wife’s $400,000 life insurance policy, imminent divorce and worsening financial troubles. Their case also focused on a murder-for-hire attempt.
A man Argie gambled with, James Timbas, confirmed the theory when he contacted police after hearing of Maureen’s death.
According to Timbas, Argie would complain about his wife and their relationship when he gambled, as well as how he “hated her and wanted to get rid of her.”
He claims that several weeks before Maureen was found dead, Argie offered him a share of his wife’s insurance policy if he helped kill her.
When Timbas said he refused, he was offered a smaller amount of money to find a “hit man” to commit the murder, which Timbas said he also declined.
Argie spent 911 days incarcerated before his trial. Several delays were attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The eventual sentencing ended with Judge Marguerite Wageling offering condolences to Maureen’s family and a message for Argie.
“The evidence against you in this case was overwhelming, as evident by the swift verdict that was rendered in this case. Your selfish, narcissistic and possibly addicted-fueled behavior led to the devastation of your family,” she said.
“Not just your mother or your sisters or the Gaudets, but most importantly two small children. The ripple effect is going to be lifelong. Every time someone speaks of family in front of your children they’re going to relive this pain.”
The two Argie children, a boy and a girl, are in elementary school. Family members said in court that they have rallied to provide support.
“My heart breaks for Ella and Gavin, who went off to school that day, happy little kids,” said Maureen’s aunt, Kathleen Arenburg. “By the end of their school day their lives had changed forever.”
Erin Gaudet gives credit to Maureen, her sister-in-law, for priceless guidance and advice — both at home and professionally as a social worker.
“All that have sat through this trial were able to hear kind words spoken about Moe, however, it would not do justice to how strong she was and the love that radiated from her being for her children,” she said.
She watches her husband, Matt Gaudet, go to the cemetery every weekend to visit his sister.
Their mother, Anne Gaudet, read aloud in court a letter she wrote to Maureen in the wake of her murder.
“I miss the opportunity to trade new recipes, to provide ideas about mundane household tasks, to share book titles, to recommend TV shows to watch, to suggest experiences to seek out and explore,” she said.
“I hate that you will miss so many firsts and rights of passage that were yours to experience, as their mother.”
During one of their last conversations, Anne told her daughter that she was strong and would get through this tough time of separation and divorce.
She has tried to salvage favorite memories, the ones that define Maureen, with a photo album. Her favorite shot, she said, is of Maureen standing on top of a roof, wearing a tool belt while working for Habitat of Humanity.
She repaired trails in the Appalachians, prepared taxes for seniors and in low income communities, ran clothing drives, painted schools and churches, replanted dunes in the Outer Banks.
Matt Gaudet emphasized that his niece and nephew “will be loved and loved and loved, except by the one person who loved them more than anything, their one and only mother, Maureen.”