"Are you tired of being bullied?" – "We can make any problematic relationship disappear." – "You can't trust every organization on the internet, but you can trust us!"
The parody website "rentahitman.com" advertises with pithy slogans like these - hire a contract killer. With a non-existent 1964 statute, fake reviews, and even a "group and senior discount," the site touts it's supposed to hire hit men. But some seem to take the site seriously. According to a statement from the Tennessee prosecutor's office, the FBI arrested 21-year-old Josiah Garcia, who had seriously applied for the fake job advertisement - and wanted to score points with his military experience.
The air force officer submitted an application in mid-February, the public prosecutor said. Garcia was looking for a "well-paying" job that would match his military experience, the FBI said in a affidavit. The father-to-be says he wanted to earn extra money for his family. Apparently, Garcia considered himself suitable: "What can I say, I enjoy what I do. So if I find a job that's similar to what I've been doing (like this one), switch me, Coach!" Later, after several emails, he is said to have given his contact details to the manager of the fictitious company, the site's system administrator.
Then the FBI took over. An undercover cop communicated with Garcia, who then agreed to kill a person for $5,000. On Wednesday last week, the FBI agent and the suspected would-be hitman met to finalize details and pay a deposit. After Garcia offered a photo of the dead body, the FBI arrested him. He has now been charged with planning a contract killing and could face up to ten years in prison if convicted.
"Rent a Hitman" has been around since 2005. At that time, the administrator wanted to promote his newly founded cyber security company, but it failed. The administrator kept the website and turned it into a parody homepage, also recognizable by fan articles, obvious misinformation and a request for donations for "Guido's coffee fund": "I prefer my coffee as black as my humor."
Sources: Rentahitman.com, Tennessee Attorney's Office, Washington Post