A wealthy, well-connected real estate agent in the Ozarks decided to have her mother-in-law murdered. So far, so tawdry — it sounds like a True Crime melodrama that will one day appear on Netflix (something like it may have, already. I think there’s a show called Ozarks about a family’s descent into criminality).
What’s interesting about it is the woman’s justification.
According to a probable cause statement, it all began when Bauman became convinced that her 74-year-old former mother-in-law was causing a strain in her relationship with her daughters. She and her ex had divorced in 2018, and she worried he and his mother might try to get full custody of the girls.
On March 1, she confided in an unidentified woman and asked for help finding “somebody to get rid of her.” Pressed about whether she was serious, Bauman said she “knew it was wrong as a Christian, but she would go to church and ask for forgiveness after it was done.”
Then, authorities say, she wrote the 74-year-old target’s address on the back of a business card.
The alleged scheme unraveled when the woman Bauman solicited for help finding a hit man went to law enforcement instead. Because of Bauman’s political connections, the Missouri State Highway Patrol’s Division of Drug and Crime Control handled the case “to avoid any hint of impropriety,” Camden County Prosecutor Caleb Cunningham told local station KY3 News.
Christian morality: the world’s greatest get-out-of-jail-free card. Everything is permissible as long as you ask Jesus to forgive you after the vile deed is done.
Also, isn’t this the most denouement ever? How often does it happen that trying to hire a hit man goes bad because the process requires revealing your intent to commit a crime to multiple people?