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Man arrested for soliciting murder ‘victim’ on Craigslist

On April 22, 2009, Seattle Police detectives were notified of a disturbing advertisement posted on Craigslist. The ad, entitled “A strange desire”, was posted in the “Casual Encounters” section of the site under the Seattle-Tacoma area listing. The ad indicated that the person wanted to have sexual intercourse with a woman and then kill her.

Seattle Police Vice detectives attempted to initiate contact with the suspect. In light of recent, high profile incidents involving online advertisement sites nationally, the purpose of the immediate covert law enforcement contact was to initiate a dialogue in order to evaluate the potential threat to the community.

A Vice detective, acting in an undercover capacity, contacted the suspect via email to determine whether the suspect’s online request was “anonymous fantasy” or something more sinister. The suspect indicated that he posted the advertisement looking for someone who wanted to be killed, but that he was willing to kill an unwitting participant. Further, he suggested that he be paid for the act.

After several days, and approximately 30 electronic communications with the Vice detective, the suspect agreed to meet the would-be victim at a Seattle motel, but only after doubling his price for the murder. The suspect described what sexual acts he wanted to perform with (and to) her, and alluded to the method he would use to kill her.

On April 27, 2009, the suspect and the Vice detective exchanged emails, in which the suspect was informed of the location of the would-be victim and the details of the payment. The suspect replied that he would complete the murder. Seattle Police detectives staked out the motel and waited for the suspect to arrive. The suspect did arrive and was taken into custody by patrol officers. He was interviewed by detectives and later booked into the King County Jail for Investigation of Attempted Murder.