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    Friday, June 21, 2024

    Second brother charged in Groton murder-for-hire plot

    State police arrested a U.S. Army sergeant Friday on charges he gave money to his older brother who allegedly concocted a murder-for-hire plot in prison.

    Jeremiah Peikert, 30, who was stationed at the Fort Cavazos Military Base in Texas, was extradited to Connecticut and arraigned Friday in New London Superior Court on charges of conspiracy to commit murder and conspiracy to commit risk of injury to a minor.

    Previously arrested on similar charges was Peikert’s brother, 32-year-old Joshua Peikert, who was an inmate at Corrigan Correctional Center in Montville in 2022 when police said he tried to hire a hitman to kill a woman, her two kids and the woman’s boyfriend. Police said Joshua Peikert supplied a cellmate the name of his intended target, an address in Groton and the location of a spare key.

    In December, as part of the ongoing investigation, police traveled to Texas to question Jeremiah Peikert about deposits of $100 and $150 he had sent to a prison account at Corrigan. The money, police allege, was a “finder’s fee” for an inmate who pretended he would hire a hit man for Joshua Peikert.

    Jeremiah Peikert told police he knew his brother had some type of plan to have a woman hurt but was “unaware of the specifics, but knew the money was being paid to Witness #1 for his role in arranging to have Victim #1 hurt,” according to the arrest warrant affidavit in the case.

    He also told police he only reluctantly had sent the money after being pressured by his brother.

    During a conversation, Jeremiah Peikert said his brother mentioned he did not want Victim #1 or the kids in his life anymore and didn’t want to see them, police wrote in the affidavit.

    ”I did not immediately connect this with wanting them killed, but it makes sense now,“ Jeremiah Peikert told police.

    Jeremiah Peikert remains held on a $500,000 bond and is due back in court on May 23. His brother Joshua also remains held on a $500,000 bond.

    g.smith@theday.com

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