$100k bond set in murder-for-hire case

Women arrested for allegedly arranging for the murder of her husband.

Manatee County, Fla. -- A Manatee County judge sets a $100,000 bond for Rachael Natalie Leahy, 34, in the murder-for-hire case of her ex-husband. David Joseph Leahy, Jr. lives at the Founders Club in Sarasota.

PREVIOUS STORY: Mom hired hitman, plotted to kill ex over custody battle

The judge told Leahy if she sets bail, she will be under supervised release. She would check in twice a week and would wear an ankle monitoring device. Other conditions include no weapons and no passport. Leahy is court ordered not to have any contact directly or indirectly with her ex-husband. The judge said not to come within 500 feet of him, no contact by phone, fax, social media or through a third party.

“She felt this was the only recourse for getting her kids back,” says Dave Bristow with the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.

According to the arrest record, the 1200 block of 60th Avenue West area is where Leahy met an undercover Manatee County Sheriff’s Deputy -- not once, but 3 times -- between August 23 and September 8 the day she was arrested.

According to the undercover deputy, that’s where they planned how to kill her ex-husband. The deputy gave Leahy over and over again the chance to call it off but she never did.

“She’s been pretty adamant about wanting her husband dead,” says Bristow.

Manatee County Sheriff’s office says Leahy called their deputy three weeks ago thinking he was a hitman.

The undercover cop writes, “She said she wants her kids back and she has played nice for too long.”

Bristow says, “There are 1,000 other ways to see your children.”

Leahy even discussed how to kill her husband David Leahy, Jr.

According to the undercover cop, “She mentioned that he could die via an 'accident' like a drowning or if he was caught in a fire.”

Leahy didn’t care how he died and offered $5,000 to get it done. She paid the undercover deputy $2,500 up front.

The judge set her bail at $100,000, the state asked for $1 million.

During her first appearance in court, Leahy claimed she was broke living off food stamps, with a friend, and didn’t have a job.

Leahy told the judge, “I agree to the stipulations. I can’t afford a bond that high.”

Yet the deputy writes in his report, ”Rachael told the undercover cop that she may have another "job" for him to do. An unknown individual was holding money that belonged to her and she was upset about it.”

Bristow says, “Throughout the whole process she didn’t’ show a lot of emotion. She was straightforward the whole time until yesterday when she found out she was being charged, [that's when] she broke down and cried.”

Deputies say when Leahy's ex-husband learned she was trying to kill him, at first he thought it was a prank but he later called deputies back surprised but thankful.


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