Stephen Perry, an Indiana man, is standing trial after he asked his black co-worker to kill his wife, thinking that his colleague was the right person for the job because of his race.
"You're black," Perry, 27, allegedly said. "I know ya'll know people."
Perry approached Adrian Howard with a $15,000 deal to kill his wife because he thought it would be the best solution to their divorce battle.
Howard recorded two conversations he had with Perry and showed Perry's wife, Allison Mayer. Police were alerted and Perry was arrested in December on a charge of conspiracy to commit murder.
He is now being held on a $250,000 bond with a pre-trial hearing on March 12.
Howard thought Perry was joking when he first approached him about killing her, but later he offered him $15,000 and a machine to print counterfeit money.
"I just want this to be over and done with. So if she dies, I can drop the divorce lawsuit," Perry said. "She's dead, and I'm free."
His wife told police that they were $200,000 in debt. They were married in December 2009 but he moved out in March 2012 and filed for divorce.
The divorce was complicated over an argument about an inheritance Perry's mother had left them after she died.
Perry also allegedly believed Mayer owed him $15,000 and was telling people that she had stolen it from him.
Perry gave Howard a paper with details about where he should kill her.
In the paper, he wrote Mayer's name and address. She was living with her grandparents, but Perry specifically told Howard that he only wanted his wife killed.
He also told Howard that he could not hurt the family dog, and if he did, the deal would be off.
"You hurt my dog, the deal's off," Perry said.