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2 people shot in JC December 22, 2014

3 plead guilty in murder-for-hire plot

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Three people could face up to 10 years in prison each after pleading guilty in federal court in St. Louis to a botched murder-for-hire plot.

The U.S. Attorney’s office announced the pleas Thursday for 31-year-old Anishika Ward, 35-year-old Cortez Brown and 39-year-old Lawrence Wallace. Wallace is from Detroit; Ward and Brown are from St. Louis.

The plot was connected to the 2008 murder trial against Kenneth Sills. Two juries failed to reach a verdict and he faced a third trial. Authorities allege that two of Sills’ relatives wanted to eliminate an eyewitness before the third trial. That witness was not harmed and went on to testify. Sills was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.

A fourth suspect charged in the conspiracy faces trial next month.

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