Deputies: Florida inmate tried to hire hit man to kill judge
TAVARES, Fla. (AP) — A Florida inmate is accused of attempting to hire a 75-year-old hit man named “the Rabbi” to kill the judge on his child-pornography case.
A sheriff’s report says 56-year-old Robert Anthony O’Hare has been charged with solicitation to commit murder during a phone call from jail on Jan. 7, the day before Judge Don F. Briggs sentenced him to 20 years in prison.
Investigators say O’Hare called his mother from the Lake County Jail and gave her a coded message that translated to “kill Briggs.” He asked her to give it Albert Bowman, whom he called “the Rabbi.”
The arrest affidavit said the mother called her son back, saying Bowman “knows what you want ... but he can’t do it because he’s just a ‘Rabbi.’ ”
The Orlando Sentinel reports that O’Hare’s mother said she never gave Bowman a note and two never met to discuss the matter.
Bowman said there was no plot to kill the judge.
“I’m 75 years old, blind in one eye and have a cataract in the other,” said Bowman, of Mount Dora. “I don’t think I’d hire me as a killer.”
Bowman also said he didn’t get any money.
“I hope someone would look at my bank account. It’s pretty drained right now,” he said. “This whole thing right from the get-go is something that doesn’t make any sense.”
The mother says she numbers she and her son exchanged were Bible verses.
“These are absolutely bogus charges,” she said. “My son never, ever in a million years would do something like that.”
She said the Lake County Sheriff’s Office is out to get her son.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement found more than 50 images and videos of underage girls on O’Hare’s computer in 2015, the arrest affidavit said. Agents said O’Hare used an “elaborate telescope and camera system” to videotape a girl who lived next door while she was undressing. In 2016, he was accused of putting hidden cameras inside miniature jukeboxes, which were then delivered to children so that he could record them in their homes.
O’Hare’s mother said he pleaded no contest to possession of child porn and video voyeurism so he could appeal the case.