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East Troy man accused of attempting to hire hit man to kill Walworth County officials

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Pedro Oliveira Jr.
January 20, 2010
— An East Troy man was charged Tuesday with attempting to hire a hit man to kill three Walworth County officials.

John K. Gorman, 51, is accused of plotting the murders of Assistant District Attorney Diane Donohoo, East Troy Police Officer Kevin Weber and Village of East Troy Clerk Alita Bourdo.


Gorman tried to eliminate the three officials for prosecuting criminal cases against him, according to the criminal complaint.


Walworth County cases against the East Troy man include stalking Bourdo, several counts of bail jumping and possession of firearms, which is a violation of his bond on a previous case.


Gorman was charged Tuesday with three counts of solicitation of first-degree intentional homicide and three counts of felony bail jumping. He is being held on $200,000 bond.


According to the criminal complaint:


Walworth County authorities were tipped off in late December by an inmate at the Walworth County Jail who said Gorman had sought his advice on finding a hit man.


The inmate told sheriff's deputies that he referred Gorman to a Hispanic drug dealer who goes by the name of Shorty. The inmate told Gorman that Shorty would call him the next day.


An undercover officer later contacted Gorman pretending to be Shorty and agreed to meet him in Mukwonago.


The undercover officer and Gorman met at a home improvement store and headed to the parking lot of a nearby restaurant.


"Basically, I need some work done," Gorman told the undercover officer.


The undercover officer asked about the kind of service, and Gorman told him he needed some "Dumpster" service. "Put it this way, disappearing," he added.


The undercover officer continued to press Gorman for specifics about the kind of service Gorman needed.


Gorman held up his right hand and wiggled his four fingers as if saying good-bye. He repeated the gesture several times during the conversation.


Gorman later circled on a map the houses where the police officer and the municipal clerk live. He said he didn't know where the prosecutor lives, but he provided details about the location the would-be victims frequent and what kind of cars they drive.


The East Troy man asked the undercover officer to give him plenty of notice so he could visit his mother in Florida and establish an alibi.


"These people are going to die," the undercover officer said.


He asked if Gorman was sure he would not regret the three murders.


"Do I look like I'm regretting it?" he responded.


Gorman said he would pay for the crimes by working on buildings for the undercover officer. Gorman said he had no money but is a skilled carpenter.


A few days later, the undercover officer contacted Gorman saying he needed firearms to kill the victims. Gorman said he would get those from a friend. He also offered the undercover officer construction tools to pay for the crime.


Gorman was arrested Friday at the Walworth County courthouse while making a court appearance on one of his cases there. He is charged in Waukesha County with solicitation of murder because the meetings with the undercover officer took place in Mukwonago.


He is scheduled for a preliminary hearing Wednesday, Feb. 3.



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