A 32-year-old Maplewood man is in federal custody, suspected of placing a Craigslist ad offering a $1 million reward for any officer killed.
William Lawrence was arrested on a federal complaint on suspicion of using interstate commerce facilities in the commission of murder for hire, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced Monday in a news release.
Lawrence lives in an apartment in the 7700 block of Lindbergh Drive, according to an article in the St. Louis Post Dispatch.
“Wanted dead, all the Maplewood city police officers, paying one million per head. Two million for detective (redacted).” It was dated Feb. 29.
Chief Stephen Kruse said another St. Louis-area police agency contacted them Thursday to tell them about the ad.
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Maplewood detectives conducted an investigation and acquired an email address and IP address. It was tracked to Lawrence’s residence, police said, and he was arrested Friday.
Kruse said Maplewood police are familiar with the suspect. In February, they responded to a call involving the man and a disturbance with a neighbor.
Lawrence was upset that Maplewood police did not return firearms they seized, according to the release.
If Lawrence is convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, fines up to $250,000 or a combination thereof.
“It’s crazy,” Kruse said. “It’s disconcerting because in the ad it basically listed, for the death of all Maplewood police officers, but it named one detective in particular, which would be very disconcerting.”