A Connecticut woman charged with hiring a hit man to kill her ex-husband was sentenced to five years probation after a plea deal on Monday.
Tiffany Stevens, 39, was sentenced in Hartford Superior Court nearly after a jury deadlocked and declared a mistrial to her case in December 2014.
Stevens pleaded guilty to a reduced felony charge of inciting injury to persons. Should there be a violation of her probation conditions, which include establishing no contact with her ex-husband, she can face up to 10 years in prison.
Stevens was arrested in 2012 by police who alleged she hired a handyman to kill her ex-husband, 49-year-old Eric Stevens, for $5,000, according to the Associated Press. The plan was foiled after the handyman told Eric about the plan, who then told local authorities.
Stevens' motivation appears to be rooted in a child-custody battle between her and her ex-husband. Eric told police that control over a $50 million fund would go to whoever obtained custody of their daughter, but Tiffany Steven's father counters this claim, saying the fund never existed.
Humbert Santos, Tiffany Steven's attorney, agreed with the outcome of Monday's court session.
"It was an appropriate disposition, and my client's innocent," Santos said, according to the Hartford Courant.
Eric Stevens complained about the way prosecutor Anthony Bochicchio presented the case, and he said he believes the court judges presiding over his divorce and child custody case were influenced by his ex-wife's wealth.
In spite of an attempted murder charge, a family court judge still allowed Stevens to maintain custody of her daughter. Eric alleges he hasn't seen his daughter in almost four years because of his ex-wife's refusal to comply with family court orders regarding visitation and phone calls with his child, according to the Associated Press.
Eric reportedly added that he had a federal lawsuit filed against Tiffany and her father. A marshal was waiting to hand the two papers outside the courtroom, the Hartford Courant reports.