Exclusive: Louisville man faces federal charges in out-of-state - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Exclusive: Louisville man faces federal charges in out-of-state murder-for-hire plot

William Butler William Butler

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - It all started when police suspected Aaron Wilkinson might be driving under the influence. He and his wife, Wendy Moore, were arrested in South Carolina. That's where court records say Wilkinson got chatty and admitted the two were involved in a murder-for-hire plot.

The plan, records say, started in Louisville in late March, with Jefferson County resident Samuel Yenawine. Documents claim Yenawine convinced Wilkinson to take a trip down to Nashville to get cocaine. Along the drive, Yenawine apparently told Wilkinson that Nashville was really Charleston and cocaine was actually murder.

The payoff was to be nearly $30,000 to kill a Charleston woman, documents say. While Yenawine came back to deposit part of the money in Kentucky, the other two accused accomplices were pulled over, which opened the case.

After Wilkinson's confession, investigators caught up with Yenawine in Louisville. Thursday afternoon, only WAVE 3 was there as he appeared in Federal Court in downtown Louisville.

"He is charged with participating in a conspiracy to commit murder as well as aiding and abetting," said William Butler, Yenawine's attorney.

The court proceeding was continued until next week. After that, Yenawine will likely be moved.

"He will probably be transported to Oklahoma City and from there he will go to South Carolina where this crime is alleged to have taken place," Butler said. "Nothing is going to happen here in Kentucky. The trial will eventually be in Charleston, South Carolina."

Yenawine is no stranger to charges like these. More than a decade ago, he faced similar charges in relation to a deadly fire. WAVE 3 archives show that in January 2001, investigators found the body of Brian Tinnell, 28, in a burned Mellwood Avenue home. In the months that followed, Yenawine was charged with murder and arson in that case.

As for the latest charges, Yenawine sits behind bars as a federal prisoner in the Grayson County Detention Center until next week when he's back in court.

Court documents show Yenawine and Wilkinson knew another from previously serving time behind bars together.

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