Timothy Lambesis, the frontman of the Grammy-nominated Christian metal group As I Lay Dying, pleaded guilty this week to hiring a hit man to murder his estranged wife.
Lambesis, 33, appeared in a San Diego courtroom Tuesday and admitted to one felony count of solicitation of another to commit murder, NBC San Diego reported
Prosecutors say the amateur bodybuilder and singer approached a trainer at his gym in April 2013 and asked if the man knew anyone who could kill his estranged wife, Meggan Murphy. Lambesis later met with an undercover sheriff's deputy posing as a hit man named Red and told him he wanted his wife "gone" and to "never see her again."
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Lambesis and Murphy married in June 2004 and have three adopted children. Murphy filed for divorce in September 2012, claiming that Lambesis had become "obsessed with bodybuilding" and had blown thousands of dollars on tattoos. She also later discovered he was having an affair, NBC San Diego reported.
According to The Associated Press, Lambesis told the undercover agent
he wanted Murphy dead because she was restricting his visits with the kids. He also worried she would receive a large portion of his income in a divorce settlement.
Lambesis reportedly gave the undercover officer an envelope with $1,000 cash and provided him with his wife's address and gate codes, pictures of her, and dates when he would have the kids.
He was arrested last May.
Defense lawyer Thomas Warwick told the court that Lambesis' "thought processes were devastatingly affected" by steroid use when he approached the undercover office and proposed the murder-for-hire plot.
He faces a maximum of nine years in prison and a $10,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for May 2.
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