NEW YORK — A former NYPD officer pleaded guilty Friday to obstruction of justice but denied allegations of trying to hire a hitman to kill her estranged husband.
Valerie Cincinelli, a 12-year veteran with the department, was arrested in May of 2019. A criminal complaint accused Cincinelli of asking a confidential FBI source to help her hire a hitman to kill her second husband and her boyfriend’s teenage daughter.
“It was a resolution that was arrived at after a very thorough and intense investigation,” said Cincinelli’s defense attorney, James Kosourous. “She did not plea guilty for murder for hire but she pled guilty to obstruction an investigation into those charges.”
It was Cincincelli’s boyfriend who went to the FBI about the plot, even wearing a wire
Before entering a guilty plea to a lesser charge, Cincinelli spoke to the judge.
“I deleted images on an iPhone with the intent to obstruct a federal grand jury investigation into the murder for hire,” she said. “I know what I did was wrong. I’m truly sorry.”
Cincinelli also broke down in tears after being behind bars for two years. According to Kosourous, it has taken a toll.
“This has, even without the pandemic, been a most stressful and debilitating time for Valerie,” he said.
Cincinelli requested bail until her sentencing. She’s been in jail since her arrest.
Court papers say the source informed her he knew someone who would do it for $7,000. They say that after a local detective went to her home on Friday with a fake story that her husband had been murdered, the source recorded her cooking up an alibi.
Cincinelli had previously been placed on modified duty for a prior domestic incident, a source told PIX11 News at the time of her arrest.
She was part of Police Service Area 9’s Video Interactive Patrol Enhanced Response unit, which does surveillance for the New York City Housing Authority.
Cincinelli has since resigned from the NYPD.
Correction: This story initially referenced Cincinelli’s ex-husband; the two are estranged but still legally married, sources said.