Stiff sentence in murder-for-hire case

Lee H. Stellmacher

More than a decade of prison time awaits a Green Lake County man recently convicted of attempting to hire a hit man.

This morning (Friday), Fond du Lac County Judge Robert Wirtz sentenced Lee H. Stellmacher, 62, rural Green Lake, to a total of 16.5 years in prison — 15 for trying to hire a hit man to have an Indiana man killed, and another 1.5 years for attempting to pay money to have a local man beaten up.

Stellmacher will receive credit for one year already served in the Fond du Lac County jail.

During the two-hour sentencing hearing, special prosecutor Scott Ceman argued for a stiff penalty to protect the victims and public, and to send a message about the right way to handle problems. The defense, meanwhile, plead for leniency and mercy, saying Stellmacher is a changed man who is sorry for his actions. Read a full recap in the May 16 issue of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.

Original story, posted Monday, May 6:

A Green Lake County man convicted of attempting to hire a hit man will face sentencing this week.

Lee H. Stellmacher, 62, rural Green Lake, was convicted in late February following a five-day jury trial in Fond du Lac County Circuit Court. He’s awaiting sentencing in jail, with his $1 million cash bond revoked.

Stellmacher was accused of attempting to pay money in hopes of having a local man beaten up, and an Indiana man killed. Neither man ended up being harmed.

At trial, the prosecution based much of its case on tape recordings of Stellmacher speaking with a man whom he thought was a hit man, but was actually an undercover police officer. The defense argued Stellmacher had been set up and entrapped by the people with whom he had been feuding.

Following an afternoon of deliberations, the jury convicted him of conspiracy to commit first-degree intentional homicide, and also attempted battery.

Stellmacher is scheduled for sentencing Friday, May 10 at 8:30 a.m. in front of Judge Robert Wirtz. Read the full recap in the May 16 issue of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.

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