Crime

Accused child molester tried to hire hit man to kill victim in Missouri case: feds

A Sedalia man facing child molestation charges is accused of trying to hire a hit man to kill the alleged victim.

John Mark Wilson, 55, is charged in U.S. District Court in Jefferson City with solicitation of murder.

Wilson was charged last year in Pettis County Circuit Court with two counts of statutory sodomy. The charges stemmed from alleged incidents in 2004 and involved a victim who is now an adult.

Law enforcement officials got a tip on Jan. 11 that Wilson was trying to find someone to commit a murder, according to allegations filed in court documents.

Undercover investigators with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Missouri Highway Patrol set up a meeting between Wilson and the tipster.

The tipster said he knew someone in Ohio who could do the job.

An undercover ATF agent posing as the hit man met with Wilson on Jan. 16 at his home in Sedalia.

According to the court documents, Wilson told him that the mother of the alleged victim made up the sexual abuse allegations in a blackmail attempt.

Wilson allegedly told the agent he wanted the victim “taken out.”

The agent asked if that meant dead.

“Yeah. I don’t know what else to do,” Wilson allegedly said. “I don’t know what else to do.”

They talked about money and it was agreed that $2,000 would be paid up front, and $5,000 more after the killing.

The agent said he would break in to the victim’s home and make it look like a burglary and robbery that went bad.

A follow-up meeting in Kansas City, Kan., was arranged for Jan. 22.

There, Wilson gave the “hit man” a picture of the victim and $2,000. The agent also had Wilson buy shotgun shells for him to use, according to the allegations.

After Wilson left the area, investigators followed him back to Missouri where he was pulled over and arrested in Pettis County.

He declined to answer questions and asked for an attorney, according to the documents.

Wilson was in custody Thursday and is scheduled to appear in court on the charges Jan. 28.

Tony Rizzo covers federal and state courts for The Kansas City Star, where he has been a reporter for more than 30 years. He is a Kansas City native and veteran of the U.S. Army.
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