Indianapolis man who led house explosion scheme convicted of murder-for-hire

(Photo supplied/Indianapolis Police Department)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP): A man serving two life sentences in a deadly Indianapolis house explosion has been convicted of a murder-for-hire charge.

Prosecutors say 47-year-old Mark Leonard tried to hire a hit man to kill a key witness in the house explosion case while he was in jail. The Marion County prosecutor’s office says a jury returned the conspiracy to commit murder verdict Tuesday evening.

Sentencing is Feb. 8.

Prosecutors say Leonard spearheaded the plot to destroy his then-girlfriend’s house with a natural gas explosion to claim insurance money. The November 2012 explosion killed a couple who lived next door and damaged dozens of homes.

Leonard was convicted in 2015 of murder, arson and other charges. He received two life sentences without parole, plus 75 years.

Four other people also were convicted.

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