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by Ivan Foley

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by Greg Hall

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Murder for hire
by Danielle Hillix
Landmark reporter

Detectives from the Platte County Sheriff's Department served an arrest warrant on Friday to Eric M. Payne, 26, for a probation violation after Payne attempted to hire an undercover detective to kill his ex-girlfriend.

Payne, from Peculiar, Mo., pled guilty last January to a class C felony of tampering in the first degree after cutting the phone lines at the home of his ex-girlfriend, a Platte County resident.

Payne received a suspended imposition of sentence, was placed on probation for three years and was ordered to serve 30 days "shock time" in the Platte County Detention Center.
While incarcerated, Payne attempted on three occasions to hire a fellow inmate to kill his ex-girlfriend.

On July 31, sheriff's detectives arranged for the inmate to supply Payne with the name and number of an undercover detective that would pose as a contract killer.

One day later, Payne made contact with the detective. He requested that the murder look like an accident, and offered $1,000 for the service. Payne then supplied the detective with the address of the ex-girlfriend.

Payne remains in jail at the Platte County Detention Center. According to Shelle Browning, public information officer for the sheriff's department, since Payne was already incarcerated when served with the arrest warrant, his probation is revoked. He now faces up to a three year sentence in the Missouri Department of Corrections.