Judge orders trial for mother, son accused of taking hit out on - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Judge orders trial for mother, son accused of taking hit out on wife

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EL CAJON (CNS) - A mother and son accused of trying to hire a hitman to kill his wife must stand trial on conspiracy to commit a crime and other charges, a judge ruled Monday.

June Carol Pickard, 57, and Francis Richard Noble, 32, will be arraigned in El Cajon Superior Court March 26.

Judge Herbert Exarhos ruled there was enough evidence to order Pickard to stand trial on charges of conspiracy and attempted solicitation to commit murder, and for Noble to proceed to trial on conspiracy and solicitation to commit murder counts.

El Cajon police were tipped off to the alleged murder-for-hire plot by an acquaintance of Pickard's.

The 31-year-old victim has been married to Noble for three years and the couple has a history of domestic violence, Lt. Steve Shakowski said.

Shakowski said he was convinced that if the concerned citizen hadn't come forward, the alleged victim would have eventually been killed.

After police received information about the defendants' alleged plans, an undercover police officer posed as a hitman and met with Pickard in the parking lot of Parkway Plaza mall, the lieutenant said. During the meeting, Noble spoke of his mother's wish to have his wife killed and made an initial payment to the undercover officer for the hit, Shakowski alleged.

Police contacted the alleged victim on Jan. 12 after she left the El Cajon home she shares with both defendants. She was brought to the El Cajon Police Department, where officers told her about the alleged plan to have her killed, authorities said.

With the victim secured away, the undercover officer told the defendants she had been killed, and final payment was made, Shakowski said. The defendants were then arrested at the same parking lot as their earlier meetings.

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