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Rape Suspect Charged with Murder-for-Hire

Updated: Friday, March 1 2013, 08:09 PM EST
COLUMBUS -- A rape suspect is facing additional felony charges after, police say, he tried to hire a hit man to kill his victim in order to keep her quiet.

Jamal Stafford, 22, is now charged with complicity to commit aggravated murder.

Detectives were notified about the alleged plot on December 12 from someone inside the Franklin County Jail. Stafford was arraigned that day and accused of raping a woman inside her home two weeks earlier, as well as holding her against her will.

According to information read during Stafford's complicity hearing on Friday, an "undercover officer" met with Stafford three times inside the jail and Stafford "provided payment."

Police soon notified the victim; her neighbors told ABC 6/FOX 28 she left with her young son soon after.

"Last week, I saw three to four guys moving her stuff into a U-Haul," neighbor Ayress Young said.

Stafford's rape trial is scheduled to start Monday, but his attorney says it will likely be continued.

Public defender Don Spartzer said he was just learning about the "murder for hire" accusations, however, he already filed a motion to suppress Stafford's statements he made to police after his December arrest since he did not have an attorney present.

Bail was set at $1,000,000 on Friday.


Reporter: Lisa Rantala
Web Producer: Ken HinesRape Suspect Charged with Murder-for-Hire

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