North Country News
5:45 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

New Mexico Man in Custody in Murder-for-Hire Plot in Vermont

Vermont State Police say they're just learning the details of what's being called a murder for hire plot involving two New Mexico men, one of whom had befriended a Vermont man serving a life sentence in a New Mexico prison for killing a Barre, Vt., girl in 2000.

Detective Matthew Hill says that 41-year-old Mark Staake was arrested by Vermont police on probation violation charges Nov. 19 at the Highgate Springs border crossing.

New York State Police say the next day Staake's nephew, 23-year-old Tanner Ruane, was arrested in the Albany, N.Y., area. He's charged in New Mexico with conspiracy to commit murder.

Police say there were two targets in the St. Albans, Vt., area.

While in prison, Staake befriended Dana Martin, who was convicted in Vermont of killing 15-year-old Deandra Fluorucci.

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