Authorities in Virginia arrested a woman for allegedly trying to hire a hitman on the darkweb.
According to a press release from the US Attorney’s Office for Western District of Virginia, 25-year-old Annie Nicole Ritenour of Charlottesville, Virginia, was arrested and charged after law enforcement learned of a murder-for-hire plot she had orchestrated.
The FBI allegedly received a tip from an informant running a darkweb murder-for-hire site. The FBI established that in June, Ritenour created an account on the murder-for-hire site and contacted the site’s administrator and told them that she wanted to have someone killed.
Communications between Ritenour and the site’s admin showed that Ritenour had sent pictures of the person she wanted to be killed and the address of the target’s workplace. She then disclosed what type of vehicle the target drove, and the best time and place to carry out the hit. Ritenour then sent $3,200 in bitcoin to the site’s admin as payment for the hit.
The FBI traced back the bitcoin to a crypto exchange that Ritenour had purchased the bitcoin from leading to her identification and arrest on October 27.
Acting Special Agent in Charge Neil Mathison:
“The FBI reminds the public that making threats online or using the Dark Web to hire someone to harm another has serious consequences, and we will work with our law enforcement partners and the United States Attorney’s Office to hold criminals accountable.”
Ritenour was charged with one count of solicitation to commit a crime of violence and one count of murder-for-hire. She could be sentenced to a maximum of up to 20 years in prison if found guilty.