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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Kentucky

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, May 20, 2022

Louisville Doctor Charged with Murder-For-Hire

Louisville, KY – A federal criminal complaint and arrest warrant were issued yesterday charging a Louisville medical doctor with use of interstate commerce facilities in the commission of Murder-for-Hire.  

According to court records, on May 15, 2022, Stephanie Russell, 52, contacted someone she believed she was hiring to murder her ex-husband.   The individual she contacted to murder her ex-husband was an FBI Undercover Employee (UCE).  Russell ultimately agreed to pay $7,000 to the UCE in exchange for murdering her ex-husband.  On May 18, 2022, Russell placed $3,500 outside of her medical office in a drop box as half of the payment.  She agreed to pay the other half once the murder took place.   The FBI arrested Russell on May 19, 2022. 

Russell made her initial appearance before a U.S   Magistrate Judge in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Kentucky on Friday, May 20, 2022, at 11:45 a.m.  Russell is scheduled for preliminary and detention hearings in the U.S. Gene Snyder Courthouse on Tuesday, May 24, 2022, at 11:00 a.m.

If convicted at trial, she faces a maximum term of up to 10 years in federal prison. There is no parole in the federal system. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

U.S. Attorney Michael A. Bennett of the Western District of Kentucky made the announcement.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department are investigating the case.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Marisa Ford.

A federal complaint is a written statement of the essential facts of the offense charged and must be made under oath before a United States Magistrate Judge.  The charge set forth in a complaint is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

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Updated May 20, 2022