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Hearing for Meyers in murder-for-hire plot is postponed

December 29, 2009|By BRIDGET DiCOSMO

HAGERSTOWN -- A court appearance on murder-for-hire charges was postponed Tuesday for the man who is serving two life sentences for setting a fire that killed two Hancock sisters.

Clarence Franklin Meyers, 39, who is in prison at North Branch Correctional Institution in Cumberland, Md., was indicted by a Washington County grand jury in early December on charges of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, felony witness intimidation and obstruction of justice.

Meyers was slated to make an initial appearance on those charges Tuesday in Washington County Circuit Court, but the hearing was not held because an attorney had just entered his appearance in the case, court officials said.

Meyers will be represented by the Washington County Public Defender's Office, court officials said.

Meyers and his mother, Grace Marie Fink, 67, formerly of 6 W. Main St., Apt. 21, in Hancock, both were indicted on charges of conspiring to kill Meyers' former girlfriend, Melissa Lindeman, the mother of the two girls who died in the Feb. 16 fire.

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The indictment alleges Fink, around Sept. 8, tried to entice an undercover Maryland State Police officer to kill Lindeman.

Fink also is charged with solicitation to commit first-degree murder, solicitation to commit malicious destruction of property over $500 and solicitation to commit first-degree assault.

Fink remained in the Washington County Detention Center on Tuesday on $750,000 bond.

Meyers already is serving two life sentences on two counts of felony murder in the deaths of Nicole Gross, 15, and Mary Gross, 12.

Both girls, students at Hancock Middle-Senior High School, died in the fire Meyers admitted setting to the home at 220 Old Route 40 in Hancock.

Meyers' attorney in that case, Assistant Public Defender Eric Reed, said the out-of-work Meyers had set the fire in an attempt to gain sympathy and support from the community.

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