Man Charged in Perry Murder for Hire Case


The Perry Police Department and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) on Sunday arrested Robert Wayne Cornwell, 32, of Perry and charged him with four counts of solicitation to commit murder, a first degree felony.
On Aug. 11, the Perry Police Department received information that Cornwell was attempting to hire someone to kill his ex-wife.  The Perry Police Department requested the assistance of FDLE’s Tallahassee Regional Operations Center in the investigation. Four days later, Cornwell met with an individual he believed was a hit man but who was actually an undercover law enforcement officer. 
Cornwell asked the undercover officer to rob and kill his ex-wife, her child, her fiancĂ© and the fiancĂ©’s child at her residence in Perry and suggested that all four be tortured first.  Cornwell provided specific instructions on where cash and jewelry were located and advised that he wanted the murder to take place that night.  The undercover officer was told he would get half of the cash and possessions taken as payment for doing the job.
"The final outcome of this investigation is a great example of a superb level of cooperation between law enforcement agencies. This investigation led to the arrest of a potentially violent offender that was actively seeking someone to commit murder for him,” said Perry Police Department Captain James Cruse. “By making this arrest, these agencies protected the lives of four innocent citizens of the State of Florida. The ultimate goal of everyone in law enforcement is to make a positive impact into the lives of the citizens we serve; in this case, that goal has been obtained and the innocent have been protected."
“There is no doubt that the quick action by law enforcement put a halt on what could have been a horrific quadruple homicide,” said FDLE Special Agent in Charge Don Ladner.  “We’re pleased that this ended safely for this family and with the individual who tried to harm them behind bars.”
Cornwell was apprehended without incident and booked into the Taylor County Jail where he is being held without bond.  He faces up to 30 years in prison.  The investigation continues with additional arrests possible.  Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Dwight Norris at (850) 584-5121.
For Further Information Contact:
Heather Smith, Kristen Chernosky or Mike Morrison
FDLE Office of Public Information
(850) 410-7001
Captain James Cruse or Detective Dwight Norris
Perry Police Department
(850) 584-5121