Documents filed in a New Mexico court illustrate new details about a murder-for-hire plot targeting superstar Justin Bieber. The Associated Press reports that convicted killer Dana Martin told investigators he persuaded Mark Staake, a man he met in prison, and the man’s nephew, Tanner Ruane, to kill Bieber, the singer’s personal bodyguard and two other individuals not connected with Bieber.
Martin, who has a tattoo of Bieber on his leg, said he was angry at the singer for not responding to his letters. So the trio plotted to castrate two of the victims — those not associated with Bieber — with hedge clippers before heading to New York City, where the singer was slated to perform at Madison Square Garden in November.
“This perceived slight made Mr. Martin upset and that, coupled with Mr. Martin’s perception of being a ‘nobody’ in prison, led him to begin plotting the kidnap and murder of Victim 3,” reveal court documents, which identify Victim 3 as “J.B.” Per the AP, police spokesman Lt. Robert McDonald later confirmed Victim 3 as Justin Bieber.
Authorities say that Staake and Ruane were to travel from New Mexico to the East Coast, but the would-be hit men missed a turn, crossing into Canada from Vermont. Staake was arrested on an outstanding warrant, and Ruane was apprehended later.
During a search of Ruane’s vehicle, troopers reportedly recovered tools and documents related to the murder plot, including a “hand-written drawing of a depiction of Justin Bieber” and documents about the targeted victims in Vermont.
Staake has since been charged with two counts of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and two counts of conspiracy to commit aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. Ruane also faces multiple charges.
Authorities say it doesn’t appear that Bieber was ever in immediate danger of falling victim to the plot.
“We take every precaution to protect and insure the safety of Justin and his fans,” Bieber’s manager, Scooter Braun, says Wednesday (Dec. 12).