A York County man awaiting trial in a murder-for-hire plot involved his teenage son when he tried to recruit a second hit-man to kill the informant who went to police after he was hired for the first job, according to court records.
Toby Allen Hess, 18, of Seven Valleys, used his cell phone to take a photograph of the informant while both were attending a May 9 preliminary hearing for Hess’s father, 46-year-old Gregory Allen Hess, the criminal complaint states.
The teen told his father after the hearing that he took the photo, was instructed to keep it, and told police he didn’t ask why because he didn’t want to know.
He also told police he “made a huge mistake by keeping the photo,” according to the complaint.
Toby Hess was charged with conspiracy to intimidate a witness or victim on Wednesday, the same day his father was charged with solicitation of criminal homicide for the second time in two months.
Gregory Hess was first charged April 18 after police said he offered someone $30,000 to kill a man he believed was having a relationship with his estranged wife.
The man hired for the hit went to police, and investigators said they set up a ruse with the would-be target to convince Hess that the murder had been carried out, including photographs of the man bound in the trunk of a car.
Hess was arrested after he paid the informant in a restaurant parking lot, police said.
According to court documents, a second informant came forward June 9 and told police that Hess offered him $15,000 to kill the first informant, half up-front and the rest when the job was finished, while he and Hess were in the York County Prison.
He said Hess gave him the informant’s name, directions to his Harrisburg home, and a piece of paper that contained two phone numbers with the names “Greg Hess” and “Toby.”
Hess told the man that Toby had photographed the informant at his preliminary hearing, and the photo would be available for his use in identifying the target, according to the complaint.
Toby Hess was released from York County Prison after posting $250,000 bail. Gregory Hess, who was released after posting $10 million bail May 30, was returned to the prison with bail denied Wednesday.
Both have a preliminary hearing scheduled June 30.