Murder for hire cases can be difficult to prosecute as demonstrated by a recent case in Texas in which the Collin County District Attorney’s Office dismissed a felony charge against man from Garland who was accused last year in a murder for hire plot in Allen.
The Dallas Morning News reported that Robert Wayne Bass, 46, was indicted on a charge of solicitation to commit capital murder. He was facing a sentence of up to life in prison if convicted. However, prosecutors said in a brief motion filed last week that they couldn’t make a case.
The Morning News reported on how Bass had been incarcerated for more than a year at the Collin County jail with bail set at $500,000. He was due to be released last Friday, according to reports.
Allen police said that Bass responded to a Craigslist ad that was posted by Steven Lee Gordon. Police claimed Lee said he was having marital problems and wanted help to get his Malaysian-born wife deported from the United States. During Gordon’s trial in May, prosecutors said that the duo’s plan shifted from having the wife deported to having her killed. Gordon paid in excess of $25,000 to Bass as part of the deal, according to prosecutors.
Gordon told investigators he never intended to have his wife killed. Bass said in court filings that he never planned to murder her either.
Attorneys for Bass’ alluded to issues that came out during Gordon’s trial that prevented prosecutors from proceeding with the case against Bass. They would have required Gordon to testify against Bass, according to Bass’ lawyers and he had no intention of doing so.
Gordon was convicted on the solicitation for murder charge in May when he was sentenced to 60 years in prison. His case is on appeal.
Evidential difficulties are not uncommon in murder for hire cases. They will often involve he said, she said kind of evidence, unless there is firmer evidence such as a recording.
The stakes are very high in any murder case, and it’s important to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney.