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Alaska man indicted in murder-for-hire plot against woman

February 22, 2021 GMT

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska man who allegedly stalked his ex-girlfriend for months has been indicted on a charge of attempting to hire someone to kill her.

Roger Keeling, 54, of Fairbanks was charged with murder-for-hire in an indictment by a federal grand jury last week, U.S. Attorney Bryan Schroder said.

Keeling tried to pay $1,500 to a man he met in jail to help him find someone to kill the Fairbanks woman, authorities said.

Keeling’s public defender, Gary Colbath, said in an email to The Associated Press on Monday that his office cannot comment on pending cases.

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Prosecutors said Keeling transferred money to the inmate’s mother. Police searching Keeling’s home found a detailed map of the layout of the targeted woman’s home, authorities said.

Keeling was charged in state court last fall with stalking the woman he once dated, sending her rambling emails, slashing her tires and leaving notes about black magic and curses along her running route.

Keeling was charged with stalking in federal court in January, potentially adding a larger penalty to the state charge.

Beginning in October, Keeling was charged with domestic violence offenses for separate events following an alleged choking, the Department of Justice said.

The charges included assault, stalking, vandalism, unlawful contact and violating a domestic violence protective order.

His former girlfriend sought a restraining order against him after he choked her and threatened to burn down her house, a court affidavit said.

Keeling served short jail sentences for breaking the terms of his release but continued contacting the woman through messages passed by a third party or by email, the affidavit said.

The maximum sentence for attempting murder-for-hire is 10 years imprisonment, the justice department said.

Keeling is being held at the Fairbanks Correctional Center.