Matt Horsley and Pure Financial Advisors steal from families. Lynn Stuart reaps the rewards of Theft
Money Can’t By Me Love?
“I’ll buy you a diamond ring my friend
If it makes you feel all right
I’ll get you anything my friend
If it makes you feel all right
Cause I don’t care too much for money
For money can’t buy me love”
You see a lot in 20 years of marriage. And hopefully learn a lot too. But I never thought I’d yet to learn that love, some love, is a commodity that ripens, and is best sold before the buyer knows it’s already rotting.
My wife’s affair started with her co-worker while they were working together at San Diego’s Channel 5 Fox News station. She was an on-air reporter and weekend anchor—he was a regular weekend “special guest” (aptly titled it turns out) on the weekend morning show. My wife worked both Saturday and Sunday each weekend for about a year during which her then co-worker appeared regularly on the show. Her weekend-anchor “on-air” time was limited to about two hours during her eight hour shift in the early morning hours. She went to work at 4:00 a.m. and worked until about noon Most of the eight hours she had “free” to develop stories, write text for the tele-prompter, and apparently, entertain the guests of the show.
Pure Financial Advisors–Capital Acquisition
The man who she now lives with was is a wealthy Senior Financial Planner Pure Financial Advisors in San Diego, California. He advises wealthy clients on retirement and estate planning, tax planning, and investments. He’s worked with San Diego “wealth management” clients, trusts, and charitable organizations. He’s well-educated-with a degree from the University of Michigan, and serves as a director or officer of several local “family oriented” charitable organizations including the San Diego Center for Children. A recent press release describes his wealthy client base and responsibility for the financial security of many San Diego families. Judging from accounts of his various love affairs, he is apparently talented at using his affluence to persuade many toward financial security. At least for a time.
I dated this guy right before and during this time. I was 22 and dumb. Just like only an older charismatic guy can do, he convinced me to cheat on my boyfriend in a weekend. He then flew me out to San Diego twice a month on the weekends for the weekend. We had a lot of fun at first. That was his thing, we would do this till it wasn’t fun anymore. He took me on a trip across the world for a couple weeks, took me to meet his parents in Michigan, boat trips, day trips…then it started to go south for no reason. One minute he was telling me how much he loved me, how he could see the two of us having a kid I’m the next couple years , then I assume he started in a lot heavier with this affair. Once when we went to a club he even made out with another girl in front of me, then still convinced me to sleep with him the same night and for many months into january. He totally broke my heart. And I had to find out this way. Sucks.
The signs (that I missed) that my wife was having an affair began in 2007 when she started coming home later and later from her weekend anchor shifts. Her shift was over at noon, but she would often arrive home near dinnertime. Since she was on TV, I could watch her in the mornings with our son—then four years old—from our living room. “Look! Mommie’s on TV!” Many times she was “on TV” with the regular “special guest” from Pure Financial. Our son and I enjoyed playing together while we could watch Mommie “work.”
I didn’t suspect my wife of cheating until much later—after she filed for divorce and began living with her current boyfriend and former “special guest.” As I think back, she would often explain that she was late because she had “extra work to do after the show.” It was a valid excuse—news reporting is a hard-working career. It requires long hours and odd shifts—you have to be “on” when the news is “on.” She would often work fifteen or twenty hour days. If someone calls in sick in a shift after you, you’re expected to cover. It was normal, and I didn’t mind because I got to spend the time with our son, going for short hikes, to the zoo or playground, or just spending quality time together—father and son at home. My wife and I had been together since High School—twenty years. I didn’t suspect her of cheating for a single second.
Prepare Your Financial Future
She had been spending more and more time at work with her morning show because it was an advance in her career—her chance to move “up” to a permanent anchor position; the “plum” position. Her night-time shifts were three days a week, weekend morning shows two days a week. I recall that she more frequently began arriving home after midnight—several hours after her show ended. I assumed it was simply her demanding career. I had an early morning job and often couldn’t stay up, but noted—without suspicion—that she often crawled into bed after 1:00 a.m.
Things began to fall into place after my wife filed for divorce in June, 2007. We had been going through a rough period, but for unusual reasons. Throughout 2007 she would come home from work irritable—as if she had been having an argument with me before she arrived at home. She would come in the door “ready to fight”—it was almost as if I had been with her in the car from her work involved in some struggle. She would launch in accusing me of “you said this” when I wasn’t even in the car. She began finding fault with things that would never have bothered her before, and was often immediately hostile to me—even insulting me. She had always been emotional—perhaps a bit more so than the “average” woman—and I assumed that she was just displacing frustrations she was having at work with me. I’d normally let her blow off steam and hope she would settle down after she changed gears to home life’s more easy pace.
But in the summer of 2007 her “moods” became more permanent. There seemed to be something really eating at her—as if she really wanted a fight. I’d usually just duck and hope she got over it, but sometimes I’d tell her to lay off—that whatever was eating her wasn’t my fault. One such time, without even a fight, when I reacted emotionally myself, telling her to “lay off” she dropped the bomb. As calmly as if she were announcing enactment of a longstanding plan to change careers, she said “That’s it, I’m getting a divorce.”
I was stunned—she had never talked about divorce. Not once. I assumed she was just blowing off steam. I moved to another bedroom, gave her some “space”, but she was determined that she was leaving, repeating it for several weeks, and insisting on taking more “free time” for herself outside the home. I hoped the space would give her time to reconsider.
Plan Ahead for Market Fluctuations
I was wrong. She filed within a few weeks, served me with papers, and immediately moved out of our house leaving me and our son at home.
I realized she was already seeing someone regularly very soon after she moved out. She would–rather glowingly—tell me “I’m going to the races with someone” or “I’m going out on a date tonight.” We were separated, and I had little grounds to object, but it was clear she had become “into” someone right away. I hoped it would be just a phase—a “rebound” and she’d come to her senses that breaking up our family over another guy was wrong. Who would want to walk into a twenty year relationship and destroy a family? Even players know when they’re getting in too deep.
I was wrong again. It hit me when one day I showed up to pick our son up from school as scheduled, and he wasn’t there. His teachers said my ex-wife had arrived early and took our son home. They didn’t know that our son’s home was with me—and that she was living separately without him.
I called her and she confirmed she or someone had arrived early at school with her permission, and took him to “live with people who love him” Her cousins and parents had apparently come into town and had helped her take him from school to her new home.
This began a new, less hopeful phase. We began the usual custody legal wrangling, and the court apportioned custody between us. My son began telling me about how mommie’s new friend “Matt” had a “new car” that “Mommie gets to drive”. My (now) ex started showing up to custody drop-offs and pick-ups in a new $90,000 black Porsch 911-sales sticker still on the car. She made at the time $35,000 a year.
Be Alert for Windfall Profits
As weeks went by my son regularly told me about Mommie’s new friend “Matt” and that they were going to see his parents, and lots of his friends.
I shared this story with my divorce attorney early in the divorce—I asked her if she thought my ex-wife had been having an affair. She looked at me like I was an idiot and effectively said so. “She’s been working with him for a year, coming home late, he buys her a car, and now she’s going to meet his parents. What do you think?”
I suppose I was. But I couldn’t bring myself to believe Lynn had been cheating before our separation. My attorney suggested that the information might be useful in the divorce. I wasn’t interested in a “messy” divorce—my ex’s career at a conservative news station–Fox—made her very vulnerable to any scuttlebutt of infidelity. Even rumors would ruin her.
But I was curious to learn the truth. My attorney suggested several ways of finding out—skip tracing, phone tapping, lots of “detective” type work, which I declined. With another guy already in the picture who was willing to buy her an expensive car, paying her rent, and taking her on trips—things at the time I could not afford—I assumed the relationship was doomed. I could not buy it back, and was quite sure I no longer wanted to.
I was, however, concerned about our son. I wanted to know that he was safe with her, who this new guy was, and whether he was trustworthy. His morality was already questionable. My attorney suggested that I look at our home computer to see if I could find any files, email, photos, etc. that might lead to clues. I considered it, and remembered that we shared passwords on our email accounts. I had never used hers, and it had been so long since we opened the accounts I assumed she had changed the passwords.
I was wrong again.
I quickly logged into her account and found the usual stuff—friends, family, and poked around until I found some people I didn’t recognize. Quite a few. One of the most frequent friends was the man who was now her lover.
Diversify Your Bonds
What followed turned out to be some of the most painful moments in my life. I read email after email from 2007—before our separation—between my wife and the man who was now, and had been for some time—her lover. I could see the relationship develop. At first strictly business, coordinating his appearances on her weekend news show, schedules, topics, times, etc. He two or three times invited her out to company events. This wasn’t unusual—she received many such invitations from many people. Having a “TV News Personality” like my ex-wife at a company event with high net worth clients was a big deal. Her “star appeal” was clearly an asset—she was well aware of it and often did “favors” for guests or friends by “dropping by” an event. She reveled in the local stardom and attention.
The invitations included one or two night-time events-a dinner party or show. They appeared to be “strictly business” events. As far as I could tell, she had turned the night events down.
Until May, 2007, when I saw an email referencing confirmation to attend a show—the Jersey Boys—with a group of people. I couldn’t tell the details, but it was clear it was a group event and she was attending as a “special guest” herself. The group, and her host, was her former “special guest” and his business associates. I checked my calendar for that date, and realized that she had been working nights during that period—it would not have been unusual for her to come home late—very late sometimes—on those nights. But on this night at least she had not been working, or at least not in the way I had assumed.
She had never mentioned that she had attended a show instead of work.
Past Performance is Not a Predictor of Future Results
The emails took a different turn from there—far less formal, and far less detail. Quick, flirty, “wassup baby!” type emails back and forth. Friendly-flirty. Nothing to alert anyone reading them at the time, but the context told me that there was much more then growing between the lines. Perhaps I’m lucky–few people ever understand the how, why, and precisely when their ex- spouse fell out of love.
After our separation in July, 2007, I found several between her and her best girlfriend about her “new guy”—she bragged that he was only 35, she was 40 at the time. She told her friend he was “loaded,” bought her a new car, jewelry, and that they were planning to build a new home in Solana Beach near where we had lived together. I don’t recall any mention of his personality, intelligence, physique, or looks, other than her comment that he was “five years younger than me!” I also saw emails between her and her new lover talking about the home building project—within weeks of our separation, years before our divorce was final, they had already picked out an existing place for sale, bid on the home, and started plans to demolish and rebuild. This was a plan my ex was well-familiar with as we had purchased an rebuilt a home ourselves. It was her “dream” to live in a home that she had built from the ground up. We worked hard to build that dream together. She clearly wasn’t willing to give up all of that dream.
The details in the emails seemed to indicate they had been talking about it for some time—they echoed offline conversations with considerable details.
It was clear that she was calling the shots–She was giving direction about what to build where, how much to bid, when to meet, etc. He appeared to be taking orders—a husbandly “yes dear” attitude. It seemed to me that he, like many others who are awed by someone who’s on TV, was star-struck by her.
They Buy the Sizzle and Sell the Steak
I was floored. I had given up hopes of repairing the marriage, and since we were separated, she technically wasn’t required to be faithful, but I had no idea that she was into a deep affair at the time of our separation. As weeks went by my son innocently regaled me with more stories of their spending time together, going on trips to see parents and grandparents, spending holidays together, and the nice shiny new “fast car” Mommie was driving all the time now, as well as “Matt’s car”—the Porsche was now hers, and they used “Matt’s car”—a more family-friendly SUV–also.
My divorce attorney urged me to throw it at her in the custody battle. I refused. She was gone, and as long as my son was safe, I wasn’t concerned. But as time went on, I became increasingly concerned about our son’s safety.
On one occasion he arrived at my and my son’s home with bruises on his wrist—as if someone had held his wrists too tightly. I emailed my ex-wife about the bruises and she denied knowledge. I photographed them and sent them to her. She had no explanation. She would occasionally call me to coordinate contact with our son while she was clearly drunk. Once I heard her threaten to spank him. Our son was fearful when I returned him to her home. Details of this period have been reported elsewhere.
Asset Class May Change Over Time
As time passed more details came out in the divorce, including that she and her lover began to live together as a couple shortly after the divorce was final. They’re not married. She lost her job as a reporter soon after our divorce and moved in with him. I could share more, but it’s too painful to detail again.
Am I blameless? Of course not. I’ve learned a lot about myself as well. We could all do better. Did I deserve it for marrying a Gold Digger? I don’t think so-it’s hard to tell if that scrawny, shy, freckle-faced 17 year old high school sweetheart you fall in love with will evolve into a June Cleaver or a Betty Broderick at 40. Lynn Stuart is no June Cleaver. Young love may be innocent, but it’s also pretty dumb, and maybe so was I.
I was wrong, but I learned one thing for sure:
If money can’t buy you love, try a Porsche.
And from those twenty years of marriage to a commodity I barely knew, I can pass along my own financial advice for Mr. Horsley (what is in a name?) and his trusting clients:
“I hope you kept the receipt.”
Matthew Horsley’s Past Investments, and Aiding and Abetting Others In Abandoning Their Own Assets:
Related Links Re: Matthew Horsley, Lynn Stuart: