A Rhode Island registered sex offender was indicted Wednesday by a federal grand jury for allegedly trying to entice a 12-year-old girl and then later plotting a murder-for-hire scheme against her from jail because she needed to “end up dead,” federal prosecutors said.
Chandler John Cardente, 28, is now charged with enticement of a minor; committing a felony offense involving a minor while being a registered sex offender, and interstate murder-for-hire, the Justice Department said.
Cardente began communicating with the girl on social media on Dec. 3 2021 and posed as a 17-year-old boy, authorities said. The pair allegedly had sexual contact days later. Cardente was later arrested.
While being held in jail, he spoke to an unidentified person via telephone and allegedly expressed interest in killing the girl because she was a witness against him. He offered the would-be killer $200 in cash and equipment worth $1,500, federal prosecutors said.
A Rhode Island State Police detective posing as a hitman gave Cardente a chance to back out of his plan, WPRI-TV reported.
“I’m going to go to sleep at night so, I’m fine with it.,” he allegedly said. “I just need it done before I get indicted.”
Cardente was convicted in 2014 of first-degree child molestation and one count of third-degree sexual assault. He was later convicted of other sex offender crimes in 2019 and 2020, according to the state sex offender registry.