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Bear Lake County woman sentenced to 7.5 years for soliciting murder

POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI) – A 31-year-old Ovid, Idaho woman was sentenced to 90 months in federal prison for soliciting murder, U.S. Attorney Josh Hurwit announced Friday.

According to court records, on May 23, 2023, special agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) received a tip from a reliable source regarding an individual, DeAnn Parkin, attempting to hire a hitman through a parody website. Parkin, motivated by personal grievances, sought the murder of the intended victim, providing detailed information about that victim and expressing urgency in email exchanges from May 14 to May 22, 2023. 

Undercover operations began on May 23, with an undercover agent introducing himself to Parkin as a hitman. The undercover agent communicated with Parkin through text messages and calls. Over several days, Parkin persistently and unequivocally conveyed her desire for the murder to be carried out. The undercover operation culminated with an in-person meeting in Ovid on June 6, 2023, where Parkin provided the undercover agent a $100 down payment, a diamond ring and an agreement for future payments. Parkin was arrested after the payment occurred.

“While the defendant’s scheme to arrange a murder is shocking, it should not be surprising that law enforcement—in this case the ATF—was in a position to stop it,” U.S. Attorney Hurwit said. “Along with our partners, we will continue to hold violent offenders accountable, regardless of the nature of their criminal conduct.”

Senior U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill also ordered Parkin to be placed on supervised release for three years following her prison sentence. Parkin pleaded guilty to use of interstate commerce facilities in the commission of murder-for-hire on Jan. 9, 2024.

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