By Dan Whitcomb
(Reuters) - A New York City policewoman was arrested on Friday and charged with asking a man to arrange the murder of her estranged husband and a 14-year-old girl, court documents showed.
Officer Valerie Cincinelli, 34, was taken into custody by the FBI on Friday and charged in U.S. District Court in New York with conspiracy to commit murder. She was ordered detained without bail during a brief initial court appearance.
In the federal criminal complaint filed against Cincinelli, prosecutors allege that the 12-year New York Police Department veteran had been discussing a murder-for-hire plot with an unnamed man since February.
A person with knowledge of the case told Reuters under condition of anonymity that the man, referred to in the seven-page complaint only as a "confidential source," was Cincinelli's boyfriend.
That person did not identify the boyfriend by name and the extent of his cooperation with authorities in the case is not clear.
Cincinelli gave the confidential source $7,000 after he claimed he knew someone who would kill both his own 14-year-old daughter, identified in court documents only as "Jane Doe," and Cincinelli's husband for an equivalent amount in gold coins, prosecutors say.
The complaint and a petition filed by prosecutors seeking Cincinelli's detention do not state why she sought the death of the confidential source's teenage daughter.
Earlier this week, Cincinelli discussed details of the crime with the confidential source, agreeing that the hit man would kill her husband near his workplace in Holtsville, New York, prosecutors said in the court papers.
The charging documents describe Cincinelli as impatient, using social media to locate Jane Doe in Warwick, New York, and suggesting the hit man run her over.
On Friday morning FBI agents arranged for a Suffolk County Police Department detective to tell Cincinelli that her husband had been killed and sent the confidential source a text, purportedly from the hit man, of a murder scene.
Cincinelli then discussed potential alibis with the confidential source and said they would both need to delete incriminating text messages and pictures from their cell phones, the court papers say.
Long Island Federal Defender Tracey Gaffey, who is representing Cincinelli in the case, could not be reached by Reuters for comment on Friday.
Local NBC4-TV, citing police officials, reported that Cincinelli had been placed on modified duty by the NYPD in 2017 following a domestic incident.
A New York Police Department spokeswoman said Cincinelli had been suspended without pay following her arrest.
(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Additional reporting by Joseph Ax in New York; Editing by Rosalba O'Brien)