$800K bail for man accused of seeking hit on wife

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - A Washington state employee accused of offering a co-worker $10,000 to arrange his wife's death appeared in Superior Court on Wednesday and was ordered held on $800,000 bond.

In court papers, Tumwater, Wash., police said Brian Cox was arrested Tuesday for investigation of solicitation to commit murder after he was secretly recorded offering his co-worker money for a hit.

Cox and his wife have been going through a contentious divorce.

The Olympian reports ( http://is.gd/UspxFY) the couple had been married about 4 1/2 years.

Both Cox and the other employee work at the state Department of Financial Institutions, police said.

As he was taken to jail, Cox said he did nothing wrong and was being set up. Defense lawyer Deborah Murphy said in court Wednesday that he looks forward to clearing his name.

The unidentified co-worker told Cox he knew someone in Special Forces who could kill the woman, court documents said.

Police say the co-worker told his boss after Cox allegedly struck up a conversation in an elevator in mid-May, offering half of a $250,000 life insurance policy on his wife "if you make her disappear." The co-worker's boss forwarded the information to law enforcement, court papers said.

During the conversation recorded Tuesday, the amount was reduced to $10,000, with Cox saying he still wanted his wife dead but the life insurance policy on his wife was no longer valid, according to court documents.

In a statement read outside court on Wednesday, Marcella Hughes, a lawyer for Cox's wife, described the woman as "emotionally and financially devastated."

Cox has worked at DFI's Tumwater office for the past seven years, most recently as an examiner in the consumer service division, agency spokeswoman Lyn Peters said.

Court papers say Cox has no prior arrest record.

If Cox makes bail, he must relinquish his passport and avoid contact with the witness, his wife and his employer's Tumwater office, Judge Carol Murphy said.

___

Information from: The Olympian, http://www.theolympian.com


(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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