There have been many people who have hired others to murder someone in their lives.  It has been for many reasons. Greed and deceit are usually the main reasons.  What if someone tries to say she did it because she thought her husband was molesting her child?  Does it make it right? Let’s talk about Stacey Schoeck and the murder of her 5th husband, Richard Schoeck.

Before the Murders

38-year-old Stacey Schoeck had been married four times before she met 46-year-old Richard Schoeck.  She had three kids, and Robert even adopted two of them.  Robert was a cub scout leader for one of the boy’s den.  One source said that Stacey was the breadwinner.  She was the head administrator for a medical and surgical practice.  

Valentine’s Day Murder

On February 14, 2010, Stacey Schoeck told her husband, 46-year-old Richard Schoeck, that they should go on a date to celebrate Valentine’s Day.  Richard agreed that they should go on Valentine’s Day date.  Stacey decided that their date should be in a dark Belton Bridge Park in Georgia and then go to Lula.  If anyone had suggested that, Richard probably would have been a bit apprehensive.  Who wants to go on a date in a dark park? However, the couple was known to have a spontaneous life to keep their two-year marriage from going boring, so Richard probably thought it was just their way of doing things.  

Stacey said she had to stay late at work and so for Richard to just go ahead and she would meet him there.  He arrived around 8:30 PM at the park.  When he got out of the truck, it seemed that right away, the shooter was there waiting for him.  There was blood in and out of the truck, so it seems he tried to get away. But, unfortunately, he didn’t.

Around 9 PM, Stacey pulled her car next to her husband’s truck 30 minutes after Richard had arrived.  She saw Richard lying on the ground in a pool of his own blood.  Hall County Sheriff’s Lt. Dan Franklin would later say, “Two shots to the abdomen, one to the chest and then two to the face, which is overkill.”

Stacey called 911 right away, frantic that her husband had been shot. Police arrived at the scene.  Police were baffled because Richard’s jewelry and wallet were still there, and the truck had not been taken. So it did not seem like a robbery.

From the start of the investigation, Stacey was on the suspect list.  One of the reasons is that she was the sole beneficiary of Richard’s $700,000 life insurance policy. The other will make you probably shake your head.  She randomly told the police that she was having an affair with a guy called Juan Reyes for years.” If I were the police, I would be confused. Why is she telling us this? Does she think she will be a suspect?  This caused Juan Reyes to be the main suspect.

Juan Reyes worked at Stacy’s company, and it seemed like she was the one who hired him.   When police investigated Juan Reyes.  They found he was living paycheck-to-paycheck and being a divorced dad. Stacey was basically Juan’s sugar momma.  She was paying for his things like his truck and cellphone and going on trips with him.  They even found out that he was living in one of Stacey’s homes. When police talked to him, Juan took an inconclusive polygraph test. He told police that he had nothing to do with it and that he was actually trying to get back together with his ex-wife and was basically using Stacey.  They asked Juan where he was when Richard had been killed and with his ex-wife.  The ex-wife confirmed that he had been with her, so Juan was eliminated from the suspect list.

The police were not sure how they would find the killer until they got a call from someone at the company Stacey worked. Lt. Dan Franklin said, “An IT technician at the spine clinic where Stacey worked called us.”

“He said, ‘When I went through Stacey’s computer, I went to go ahead and empty her spam out of her inbox, but her inbox was completely empty for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday,’ the day of the murder,” said Franklin. “He said that’s very unusual, and he said, ‘But I have backups of all of those if you guys would like to have them,’ and we said ‘Absolutely.’

It was the break they needed, and I have to say good on the IT Technician for recognizing something was off and alerting the police.

Police analyzed the 4,000 emails in Stacey’s inbox when they obtained a warrant.  One email was to a bank a few weeks before the murder requesting a transfer of $8,902 to Lynitra Ross. Lynitra was a medical assistant who worked with Stacey. There was also a second transfer on Valentine’s Day for $1,100.

Police went to talk to Lynitra to ask about the money.  Lynitra told them it was for home repairs for the house she was renting from Stacey.

Connie Hearne, Stacey’s cousin, told police that Stacey had a Chevrolet Impala that she was supposed to be selling to pay for their grandparent’s expenses.  However, the car kept disappearing and reappearing. Finally, the police found out that the Impala tires were the same as the third tire tracks they found at the park.   The car was found sitting at the rental home Lynitra Ross was renting.

Lt. Franklin got a subpoena to look at the phone records. They found one number at 8:40 PM near the park.  They saw that Stacey had him listed as Mr. Results. This person had called Lynitra Ross. They found out that Mr. Results was Reginald Coleman, a personal trainer who worked at Stacey’s office.

They found texts where Lynitra texted Stacey, “Forgot to tell you I’m coming in late tomorrow. By the way Happy Valentine’s Day.” Police would find out that this was the way to say that Richard had been successfully murdered.

Police kept investigating and found that Mr. Results would be paid $10,000, and Lynitra would live in the rental home for free for as long as she wanted.  They realized that Stacey Shoeck orchestrated all of this.

Caught

They called it Operation Tangled Web.  They first got Mr. Results, Reggie, and then Lynitra.  Stacey was harder to get. She had been tipped off, so she went into a room where only she had card access.  Eventually, she surrendered.  This was three months after Richard Schoek was dead.

Stacey Schoeck knew that she could be executed, so she agreed to testify against Lynitra Ross and Reggie Coleman. 

She had been married four times before.  Why kill Richard Schoeck? Stacey testified on the stand that it was because Richard was sexually molesting one of her sons.  In Lynitra’s court file, it says:

“In January 2010, Ross and Schoeck had lunch together, and Schoeck told Ross that she wanted to have her husband, Richard Schoeck, killed because she thought he was molesting her sons.2 Ross informed Schoeck that her boyfriend, Reginald Coleman, could kill Mr. Schoeck because Coleman did such work “on the side” for extra money. Ross told Schoeck that she would talk to Coleman about killing Mr. Schoeck.”

Schoeck followed up with Ross via text message on the weekend after their lunch conversation to see if Ross had spoken with Coleman. Ross indicated that she had, and she set up a time for her and Schoeck to meet with Coleman at his apartment the following week to discuss the details of their arrangement. Schoeck and Ross met with Coleman at his apartment on January 18, 2010, and they discussed their plans for the murder and the terms for payment. Ross suggested that the killing should occur in a secluded area near Schoeck’s grandparents’ home, and Schoeck said that Belton Bridge Park, which was such a location, would be a good place. For the killing, Schoeck agreed to pay Coleman $10,000 in cash, give him her grandparents’ 2009 Chevrolet Impala, and give him a house that his girlfriend, Ross, had currently been renting from Schoeck. The parties agreed that the murder would take place on Valentine’s Day and that Coleman would kill the victim in a manner that would make it appear to have been a robbery after Schoeck lured the victim to Belton Bridge Park. Because Coleman needed a gun to commit the murder, Schoeck took out $600 from a nearby ATM to pay Coleman’s expenses for purchasing a gun.

After scoping out the proposed murder location with Ross and Coleman, Schoeck gave Coleman the Impala as partial payment and she transferred $8,900 to Ross’ bank account to cover part of the $10,000 for the murder. Schoeck transferred the remaining $1,100 balance to Ross’ bank account the Friday before Valentine’s Day, as Ross had previously informed Schoeck that the murder would not take place until the entire $10,000 had been paid.

On February 14, 2010, Schoeck spoke with Ross at work about transferring the $10,000 to Coleman. Schoeck left the office and drove to her grandparents’ home, where she had told her husband to meet her by driving there separately. Mr. Schoeck arrived at the grandparents’ house, and, after dinner, he was to drive to Belton Bridge Park separately from Schoeck. Schoeck would allegedly meet him at the park later that evening to exchange Valentine’s gifts. While Schoeck was at her grandparents’ house, Ross called Schoeck, telling her that Coleman needed to know the color of Mr. Schoeck’s truck, which Schoeck told her. Schoeck later received a text message from Ross wishing her a “Happy Valentine’s Day” after the murder had been completed.

Schoeck confirmed the likelihood that Mr. Schoeck was dead when she called his cell phone, and he did not answer.”

Lynitra Ross was sentenced to life in prison. Reggie also got life in prison.

On December 3, 2012, Stacey Shoeck pleaded guilty to murder malice with forethought.

A few months later, and three years after Richard Shoeck’s murder, on  February 14, 2013, Stacey Schoeck was sentenced to life in prison. Richard Schoek’s sister Carol Fillinghim would tell the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “She was such a cowardly woman that couldn’t keep herself in control and had never had anyone that stood up to her. When you get too much power and control, you just believe you can do anything.”

Closing Remarks

Stacey Schoeck deserves to spend the rest of her life in prison.  Lynitra Ross and Reginal Coleman too.  I know that as a mother, if someone was molesting my children, I would want to murder them myself. However, she wasn’t 100% sure if he was.  Later, Stacey retracted that, and her son said that wasn’t true.  Therefore, she murdered Richard Schoeck for no reason.  He seems to have been a decent man, and my condolences to the family.

She also left behind three sons.  I would ask her now if she thought it was worth it because I don’t.

Stacey Schoeck murdered her fourth husband, Richard Schoeck, by hiring someone to do it on Valentine's Day.  I will tell you that this case had me shaking my head the entire time.