Police say alleged kidnapper tried to pay detective to kill witnesses

Jan. 16, 2014 at 6:37 PM
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PHOENIX, Jan. 16 (UPI) -- Police in Phoenix say a woman already facing kidnapping charges tried to pay a detective $20,000 to kill four witnesses in her case.

Bernadette Beanes, 20, who is facing more than 40 felony charges for allegedly helping Israel Celis kidnap a woman and 3-year-old son May 20, was rebooked Tuesday on charges of conspiracy to commit murder, the Arizona Republic, Phoenix, reported.

Investigators said they learned of Beanes' alleged plot to have four witnesses killed in September, at which point undercover detectives began communicating with her. Beanes later allegedly offered to pay one of the detectives $5,000 for each of her targets.

Before the murder-for-hire plot, police said Beanes allegedly helped Celis kidnap the two victims. The suspects held the victims in a hotel room, where Celis allegedly sexually assaulted the woman before leaving with Beanes and the child.

Beanes dropped Celis off at his home in El Mirage and headed back to the hotel to check on the woman, police said. However, in the meantime, the victim managed to escape and notify authorities. Beanes was arrested when she returned to the hotel and charged with 38 counts of aggravated assault, eight counts of kidnapping and one count of first-degree murder. It was unclear why Beanes was charged with murder.

Celis committed suicide after taking seven people hostage at a friend's home and engaging in a standoff with police.

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