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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, July 16, 2018

Man sentenced to federal prison for hiring someone to kill his ex-wife

ROME, Ga. - Michael McEarchern has been sentenced for attempting to hire someone to kill his ex-wife, promising $10,000 and two Atlanta Hawks basketball tickets as payment for the murder.

“McEarchern was serious about having his ex-wife killed and provided $800 as a down payment for her murder,” said U.S. Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak.  “The defendant has been brought to justice and his lengthy prison sentence will provide him with an opportunity to reflect on his egregious crime.”

“Had the FBI not been notified by a concerned citizen, McEarchern more than likely would have found someone to carry out the murder of his ex-wife,” said J.C. Hacker, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. “It is a great example of how law enforcement, working with the public, can prevent crime, and in this case the murder of an innocent woman.”

According to U.S. Attorney Pak, the charges and other information presented in court:  McEarchern was an inmate at the jail in Bartow County, Georgia, having been arrested on drug-related charges in October 2017.  While incarcerated, McEarchern reached out to several individuals trying to find someone who could arrange for the murder of his ex-wife, who lived in Cobb County.  One individual told a friend of McEarchern’s desire to kill his ex-wife, and that person reported the crime to the FBI.  To ensure that McEarchern was serious about seeking someone to carry out the murder, the FBI waited for McEarchern to reach out to the informant, which he did. 

Believing that he was arranging the killing of his ex-wife, McEarchern agreed to pay $10,000 in cash and two tickets to an Atlanta Hawks basketball game as payment.  Additionally, to show that he was serious, he had $800 in cash mailed to the purported assassin.  Jail recordings captured McEarchern providing the address to the person who he asked to mail the money for him. The FBI retrieved an envelope containing the $800 with a return address of the person who sent the money on McEarchern’s instruction. The defendant also provided an address where the assassin could find the ex-wife.   

Michael McEarchern, 29, of Acworth, Georgia was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Harold L. Murphy on July 13, 2018, to 10 years in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release. McEarchern was convicted of murder-for-hire on April 24, 2018, after he pleaded guilty.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bartow County Sheriff's Office.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kim S. Dammers, Chief of the Organized Crime and Gang Section, prosecuted the case.

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016.  The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Updated July 16, 2018