ST. LOUIS -- St. Louis Blues forward Mike Danton was arrested yesterday in an alleged murder-for-hire scheme, the FBI said.
Danton, 23, was arrested at the airport in San Jose, Calif., after the Blues were knocked out of the NHL playoffs with a 3-1 loss to the San Jose Sharks Thursday night.
According to a criminal complaint filed in federal court in Illinois, Danton told a female friend that a hitman from Canada was coming to kill him and asked the woman if she knew someone who would kill the person for $10,000.
The woman, identified as Katie Wolfmeyer, passed his call to another man, described in the complaint as a "cooperating witness."
The FBI witness and Danton spoke again, and Danton allegedly hatched a plot where the witness could kill the "hitman" at Danton's apartment and make it look like two burglars had broken in, one being killed and the other making off with $3,000 Danton had in a safe.
The "hitman" was actually an unidentified acquaintance of Danton's, according to court documents. Authorities said they have no reason to believe that the acquaintance or anyone else had been planning to kill Danton. "We couldn't confirm that to be accurate," said Marshall Stone, supervisory FBI special agent in Springfield, Ill.
Danton and Wolfmeyer, 19, both face federal murder-for-hire charges.
A spokesman for the Blues, Frank Buonomo, declined to comment, saying in a statement, "The matter is in the hands of law enforcement officials and the judicial system."
The Blues could not immediately put the Associated Press in touch with an agent or lawyer for Danton.
Danton, formerly known as Mike Jefferson, was suspended twice by the New Jersey Devils, who traded him to St. Louis last June. He had seven goals, 12 points and 141 penalty minutes with the Blues.