AG Announces Guilty Plea for Conspiracy to Assault Judge, Investigator

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(MONTGOMERY)—During jury selection yesterday in Dallas County Circuit Court, a woman on the verge of trial instead pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree criminal solicitation to commit assault in the first degree against a circuit judge and investigator. Marie Billingsley, 60, formerly of Dallas County, was sentenced to 22 ½ years imprisonment for each charge, both to run concurrent.

Billingsley is currently serving a total prison sentence of 21 years at Tutwiler Prison for Women for a 2011 conviction of solicitation to commit murder and forgeries related to life insurance fraud. Billingsley was previously convicted for trying to have an individual killed for financial gain, including forgeries, and was sentenced in Dallas County Circuit Court on April 16, 2012. Two days later, the Attorney General’s Office presented evidence to a Dallas County grand jury that she had solicited someone to disfigure the circuit judge who had heard her case and the agent who investigated the case. All cases have been prosecuted by the Office of Attorney General Luther Strange.

“Even after this woman had been held to account for her original crimes—conspiring to commit murder to get money from insurance policies she had forged—she responded by conspiring to attack the judge and an investigator involved in bringing her to justice,” said Attorney General Strange. “I am especially proud of the outstanding work of our special agents, whose diligence and skill saved one life and prevented harm to others.”

Attorney General Strange commended those involved in handling this case, noting in particular Assistant Attorneys General Andrew Arrington and John Hensley of his Criminal Trials Division and special agents of the Attorney General’s Investigations Division. He also thanked the Alabama Bureau of Investigation, the Dallas County Sheriff’s Office and the Fourth Judicial Circuit Drug Task Force.

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