"Just to Clarify, Just so You Know, I Do Want Her Dead"


Tim Lambesis Court
(Photo : REUTERS/Lenny Ignelzi)
Tim Lambesis, lead singer for As I Lay Dying, enters the courtroom for his arraignment in San Diego North County court in Vista, California in this May 9, 2013 file photo.

These are the words that Christian metalcore band As I Lay Dying's frontman Tim Lambesis is accused to saying to an undercover police officer while trying to solicit the murder of his estranged wife in May.



Arrested on May 7, 2013 on charges of solicitation of murder, Lambesis allegedly asked an acquaintance from his gym, personal trainer Brett Kimball, to kill his wife. When Kimball refused, he asked him to help find someone to do the deed. Fearing for the safety of Meggan Lambesis, who had filed for divorce in September of last year after an eight year marriage, Kimball notified law enforcement and a meeting with a "hitman" named "Red" (an undercover detective) was arranged. Deputy District Attorney Claudia Grasso said that Lambesis gave "Red" an envelope containing a down payment of $1,000 in cash (for the $20,000 "job") and photos of Meggan, along with her address, the codes to get through the security gates of her home, and a list of dates that their three adopted children would be with him, thus providing him with an alibi.

Lambesis' attorney, Anthony Salerno, called the whole thing a set up, saying, "If I had to hang a tag on it, I'd call it a scumbag snitch set-up. Law enforcement was fed something by someone who effectively orchestrated the whole thing ... He did not intend to harm anybody."

On May 9, at a bail hearing, Lambesis pled not guilty in Vista Superior Court in Vista, California. Though prosecutors asked for a $20 million bail, calling him a "flight risk" and "a danger to the public," Judge Martin Staven set his bail at $3 million and ordered the singer to surrender his passport, wear a GPS device, stay away from his wife and children (ages 4, 8 and 10) and stay in San Diego county except to meet with his attorney. After a little over three weeks in jail, Lambesis quietly made bail after paying a bail bondsman $160,000. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for June 10 but was pushed back to June 26 and then was pushed back again..

This week, after hearing several hours of testimony, a judge ruled that the case does have enough evidence to go to trial and bound Lambesis over. His arraignment is scheduled for October 22 and at that time, a trial date will be set.

Brett Kimball and Deputy Howard Bradley (aka "Red") both testified at the preliminary hearing as star witnesses for the prosecution. Deputy Bradley said that during their meeting, Lambesis explained his reasoning for wanting his wife dead - she was going to get up to 60% of his income and would not allow their children to go on tour with him. Another officer with the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department, Detective John Buckley, also testified that during the course of their investigation, police found a lock box in Lambesis' home that contained "a lot of different quantities" of male enhancement-type drugs (steroids), male libido-type drugs and estrogen blocking drugs along with more than $12,000 in cash. When pressed as to what "a lot" was, the detective responded, "30 to 40 vials and different types of pill packages."

Meggan Lambesis was not in court, but she was represented by some of her friends, who wore yellow hearts to show their support for the mom of three. The District Attorney said that Meggan has been in hiding with her children since her husband was arrested and that she is trying to remain anonymous while moving on with her life.

If convicted on the murder for hire charges, Lambesis could spend nine years in prison.

Tags : As I Lay Dying Tim Lambesis

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