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The Criminal Attempt
Hewlett and her intended victim, Paul Belton, 50, allegedly had just one sexual contact in their vehicle in the parking lot of their place of employment, according to the evidence produced at Hewlett’s trial. According to reports, Belton regretted it and severed ties, while Hewlett grew fixated and often phoned Belton in an effort to keep things going.
Hewlett wanted to have Belton killed after being rejected, so he searched the dark web for a hitman. Hewlett used the “Online Killers Market” fake dark web murder-for-hire website on July 4, 2022. She placed an order indicating she wanted someone killed and the death made to appear accidental using the login “horses5”.
According to correspondence between horses5 and the site’s administrator between August 1 and August 11, 2022, Hewlett consented to pay more than $20,000 in Bitcoin for the hit to be executed. She also provided the name, address, and phone number of Mr. Belton.
Investigations showed that Hewlett’s Coinbase account provided the Bitcoin transferred into the website’s escrow. Hewlett had made 35 deposits totaling $28,500 from her bank accounts into her Coinbase account. The deposits comprised loans and overdrafts totaling $15,000 from banks.
On August 12, 2022, the police detained Hewlett at her residence and seized a phone she had been using to browse the dark web. She had three websites that offered murder for hire bookmarked, according to data seized from the phone.