The Fulton man charged in a murder-for-hire plot to kill his estranged wife appeared before a judge Friday. Michael Branden Gordon is accused of hiring a hit man. The hit man turned out to be an undercover cop. The two agreed to shoot his wife in the head.
Gordon was arrested Tuesday after months of investigations. He was in court on Friday for his arraignment. Gordon stood in front of the judge for a very short time. Circuit court judge Carol England read the charges against him and asked about what he was going to do for an attorney. Gordon didn’t have one so he was given a public defender.
Investigators still are not telling ABC 17 News why they think Gordon tried to have his wife, Tara Moore killed. Callaway County sheriff Dennis Crane has said, Gordon and Moore were going through a divorce that does involve child custody.
According to court documents, Gordon started shopping around for someone to kill Moore last October. H came into contact with an undercover state trooper. Te two allegedly agreed that Moore would be shot in the head for only $2,000. Police say Gordon even gave a $40 down payment.
“I did meet with the victim,” Callaway County prosecutor Chris Wilson explains. “She and her family were aware of the investigation fairly early on and so they’ve been a part of that investigation for months.”
Gordon listed a Fulton apartment complex as where he lived. People tell us there say he frequently visited his fianc. We were able to talk to her. She claims she did not know anything about the plot.
We were also able to talk with Moore’s boyfriend about the ordeal. He couldn’t talk much about the case, but did say this has been a long process. He tells us they had to be very cautious over the last several months.
It took the prosecutor more than three months between when Gordon allegedly paid to have Moore killed and when he was arrested. He says the investigation just took some time.
“Compare basically the facts of the investigation to the law, and make sure that they support the charge, and then I also decided to meet with the family before we made a filing decision,” Wilson said.
Gordon’s next court date is scheduled for May 3 rd . He’s facing a possibility of 5-15 years in prison.
Gordon remains behind bars in Callaway County on a $250,000 bond.