Officer plotted to blackmail wife; she plotted his murder

AP News
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Posted: Dec 27, 2017 12:03 PM

STROUDSBURG, Pa. (AP) — A Pennsylvania police officer has pleaded guilty to a plot to blackmail his wife over having sex with a 14-year-old boy while she has pleaded guilty to plotting to kill her husband.

Keith Transue, a Bushkill Township officer, pleaded guilty last week to misdemeanor criminal coercion, and Robin Transue pleaded guilty to felony solicitation to commit aggravated assault and statutory sexual assault. The Mount Pocono residents, both 43, are scheduled for sentencing March 20.

Authorities in Monroe County said in court documents that Robin Transue told an informant her husband threatened to expose her 2010 relationship with the boy if she left him. Prosecutors say she suggested several ways to kill her husband, including a drug overdose or a hunting accident.

"Mrs. Transue freely talked about arranging for her husband's murder," District Attorney Michael Mancuso said. "All kinds of potential death scenarios were discussed."

Prosecutors said Keith Transue failed to report the abuse when he learned about it, as he was legally obligated to do as a police officer.

"Transue was using his wife's crime to keep her from leaving or divorcing him. This in turn was essentially the motive for Robin soliciting Keith's murder," Mancuso said.

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The police department placed Keith Transue on leave after the charges were filed, and Police Chief Mike McLouth said Wednesday said the officer had submitted a resignation letter.

Mancuso praised an informant who came forward and cooperated with police, saying he "likely prevented a homicide and also brought to light a sordid history of sexual assault and criminal coercion."