The text message indicated the Snohomish County man wanted to kill his wife, saying she had a $1 million life-insurance policy. A judge ordered the suspect held after finding probable cause on two counts of criminal solicitation for first-degree murder domestic violence.
A 42-year-old Monroe man apparently thought he was texting a hit man when he offered to split a $1.5 million life-insurance payout for killing his wife and young daughter, according to Snohomish County prosecutors.
But the text addressed to “Shayne” was actually sent to the man’s former boss, who called 911 Tuesday evening and showed the message to sheriff’s deputies, says a statement of probable cause outlining the case against the suspect.
A judge ordered him held in the Snohomish County Jail in lieu of $1 million bail after finding probable cause on two counts of criminal solicitation for first-degree murder domestic-violence, jail and court records show.
The Seattle Times is not naming the man because he has not been criminally charged. The deadline for the filing of formal charges is Monday.
Most Read Local Stories
- Inslee sets goal of 45,000 COVID-19 vaccinations a day in Washington; everyone 65 and older eligible now
- Body cam footage captures Seattle officers directing homeless person to Cal Anderson Park for services
- How to know when it's your turn to get a coronavirus vaccine
- Coronavirus daily news updates, January 18: What to know today about COVID-19 in the Seattle area, Washington state and the world
- Seattle's weather will get colder, but will we get snow? Here's what to expect this week
According to the probable-cause statement, the text message indicated the man was ready to move forward with a plan to kill his wife, saying she was covered by a $1 million life-insurance policy. He suggested if “Shayne” wanted a bonus, he could also kill the couple’s 4-year-old daughter, whose life insurance is worth $500,000, the statement says.
The contents of the text message are included in the statement:
“You remember you said that you would help me kill my wife. I’m going to take you up on that offer,” it reads in part. “I’ll split everything with the insurance 50/50.”
The text suggested setting up the deaths to look like either a “robbery gone wrong” or an accident, and included information about the wife’s work schedule and place of employment, the statement says.
Deputies went to the wife’s workplace, confirmed she had been married to the suspect for seven years and were told he was at their home in Monroe with their daughter, according to the statement. Deputies say while the wife reported some financial problems because her husband was out of work, she was unaware of any marital issues that would cause her husband to want to kill her and their daughter, the statement says.
When deputies went to the couple’s home to confront the husband, he initially denied sending text messages to anyone. He then admitted he’d authored the text months ago but had just been venting his anger after an argument with his wife over his talking to another woman, according to the statement.
Detectives say he told them he kept the message as a draft and his daughter must have accidentally sent the message to his former boss, the statement says.
Detectives also say the man told them “Shayne” is not a real person and that he was not trying to solicit Shayne to kill his wife and child in exchange for money, it says.
Detectives applied for a warrant to search the husband’s phone and the family’s residence for paperwork related to life insurance. Results of the search are pending, the statement says.