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Press Release

Pelahatchie Woman Sentenced to Statutory Maximum of 10 Years in Murder-For-Hire Plot

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Mississippi

Jackson, Miss.  – A Pelahatchie woman was sentenced to the statutory maximum of 120 months in prison for using interstate commerce facilities in the commission of a murder-for-hire, announced United States Attorney Darren J. LaMarca and Special Agent in Charge Jermicha Fomby of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Jackson Field Office.

Jessica Leeann Sledge, 40, was sentenced by United States District Judge Carlton W. Reeves today.  The sentence included a fine of $1,000 and a term of three years of supervised release following her release from prison.

Sledge previously pled guilty and admitted that between September of 2021 and November 1, 2021, she used the internet, her cell phone and the “Whatsapp” application to arrange a murder-for-hire.  Unknown to Sledge, the “hitman” she hired via the internet to commit the murder was in fact an FBI Special Agent. On November 1, 2021, Sledge met in Brandon, Mississippi, with the individual she thought was the assassin she had hired in order to provide an additional payment and to provide additional information concerning her intended victim. The intended victim was ultimately unharmed.  Following her arrest, Sledge waived her rights and admitted to her role in the murder-for-hire plot.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Deputy Criminal Chief Dave Fulcher prosecuted the case. 


Updated August 1, 2022