News

Inmate charged for plot to have witness murdered

By Dan Colton
for The Beacon

The Grafton man accused of holding a woman hostage in Waldo last year attempted to coordinate her killing from inside the Sheboygan County Detention Center, police said.

According to the criminal complaint, Dean Hoffmann, 56, told another inmate that he would pay for the murder of the victim in the hostage case to eliminate her testimony in court. That inmate was eventually freed from custody and informed police of Hoffmann’s alleged plot. Over the course of several months, authorities instructed the former inmate — called RF in the police report — to conduct negotiations with Hoffmann while wearing wires and relaying information back to police.

On several occasions between August and October, court records show RF and Hoffmann met in person or discussed the plan over the phone. Coded speech was allegedly used in an attempt to conceal the conspiracy, according to authorities. Hoffmann said he would pay $10,000 for the victim’s murder, police said, and provided RF with the woman’s name and residence information.

The negotiations broke down, according to court documents, after Hoffmann told the undercover informant that he was unable to pay for the killing until he was freed from custody.

On Wednesday, authorities charged Hoffmann with conspiracy to commit first-degree intentional homicide and solicitation of first-degree intentional homicide.

He was initially arrested last year after police said he held a woman hostage in her a Waldo home. Police said Hoffmann entered the home without permission and that the woman was in fear for her life.

He was caught after a Domino’s pizza delivery driver saw the victim silently mouth for help. That case is still pending.

He appeared in court Friday for the new charges of conspiracy to commit first degree intentional homicide and solicitation of first degree intentional homicide, according to court records. He faces up to 72.5 years imprisonment and $25,000 in fines if found guilty on both charges.

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