Murder for hire trial coming up

By Frank Lewis -



The trial of a woman accused of attempting to hire someone to kill two Scioto County residents begins Jan. 25 at 9 a.m. in Pickaway County Common Pleas Court.

Pickaway County Clerk of Courts James Dean told the Daily Times, Tara Lambert, 32, of Circleville, had been indicted earlier on two counts of conspiracy to commit aggravated murder, a first degree felony.

Lambert was reportedly arrested outside of a Walmart store on July 28, 2015, at approximately 6 p.m. based upon allegations of her attempt to hire someone to commit the murder of Kellie Cooke and her husband, Shawn Cooke.

Kellie Cooke is reportedly the ex-wife of Lambert’s husband and mother of his children, and Shawn Cooke is her current husband, and they were the intended victims in the case.

Pickaway County Sheriff Robert B. Radcliff said his office received information that Lambert was attempting to hire someone to murder a Scioto County woman.

However, that department did not release the woman’s name at the time of the arrest.

The attempt was apparently foiled by the work of an undercover Pickaway County detective.

According to the investigation, the undercover deputy was introduced to Lambert. From there a meeting took place in the south business district off U.S. 23 in Circleville. That is where the deputy said plans were finalized, money and a photograph of the intended victim were exchanged with that undercover deputy.

Lambert was taken into custody outside of Walmart located on South Court Street in Circleville. She was transported to the Pickaway County Jail on charges of conspiracy to commit murder.

Lambert faces three to 11 years in imprisonment if convicted, and a $20,000 fine for each charge.

Dean said the trial will not begin at 9 a.m. with jury selection as the first order of business


By Frank Lewis

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.