As I Lay Dying lead vocalist Timothy Lambesis pleaded guilty in Vista Superior Court on February 25 to hiring a hit man to murder his estranged wife, with whom he shares three adopted children.
Lambesis fronted the Christian Rock band and was arrested in May of 2013 in Oceanside, California, after attempting to hire an undercover police officer to murder his wife, Meggan Lambesis. The singer initially pleaded not guilty following his arrest and was released on $2 million bail. Lambesis could be sentenced to a total of nine years in prison and is required to pay a $10,000 fine.
Lambesis first approached a man at a gym he frequently attended, asking if he knew someone who would eradicate his wife. The man referred him to an undercover agent posing as a hit man with the code name “Red.”
The agent then met with Lambesis at a local bookstore, where he was provided with an envelope containing pictures of the singer’s wife, $1000 in cash, her address, and the gate code. Lambesis chose three “good” days for the murder to take place and mentioned his children would be with him so his alibi would be covered. The officer stated that shortly before leaving, Lambesis said to him in a recorded conversation, “Just to clarify, just so you know, I do want her dead.’”
According to Lambesis’ lawyer, the vocalist was on steroids and said that his poor thought process was most likely a result of the drug use. Meggan, who began the divorce process from Lambesis in 2012, admitted in the filing that he was obsessed with bodybuilding and she was concerned about his ability to care for their kids.
In addition, Meggan discovered the vocalist was unfaithful and had numerous affairs during their marriage. She said Lambesis traveled across the country twice in one year to visit his girlfriend, and also spent thousands of dollars on tattoos.
Although Lambesis had considered himself to be a Christian and found inspiration for the band’s song lyrics from Biblical texts, his faith seems to have changed recently. He admitted in a letter to Meggan that he no longer loved her and he lost faith in God.
The band said in a statement after Lambesis’ initial arrest, “Our thoughts right now are with Tim, his family, and with everyone else affected by this terrible situation – and with our fans, whom we love and draw strength from.”
As I Lay Dying was founded by Lambesis in 2000 as a two-person act, featuring drummer Jordan Mancino. The group has released six albums, one split album and two compilation albums. The band was nominated for a Grammy in 2008 for the song “Nothing Left,” and released their fifth album, The Powerless Rise and Decas, in 2010 to extensive critical acclaim.
The band released their sixth album, Awakened, in January of 2012 which debuted at Number 11 on the Billboard Top 200. As I Lay Dying won an award for “Metal Band of the Year” from Loudwire in 2012, competing against other established metal bands including Anthrax and Lamb of God. Both As I Lay Dying fans as well as family and friends close to Lambesis were shocked after his arrest last year and especially following his confession on Tuesday to appointing a hit man to murder his wife.
Editorial By Amy Nelson