US man accidentally texts ex-boss for a hitman

Jeffrey Lytle (Facebook)
Jeffrey Lytle (Facebook)

A man in the United States who allegedly tried to hire someone to kill his wife and daughter was sprung when he accidentally contacted the wrong person.

The Snohomish County Sheriff's Department says Jeffrey Lytle texted someone named 'Shayne' asking him to help him kill his family.

In exchange, he promised to split the US$1.5 million (NZ$2.1m) insurance policy with Shayne, according to court documents obtained by CBS-affiliate KIRO-TV.

But Lytle made a very significant error. Instead of texting Shayne, he allegedly sent the message to his ex-employer - who promptly called police.

"Hey Shayne hows it going (sic). You remember you said that you would help me kill my wife. I'm going to take you up on that offer," Lytle reportedly texted.

"... if you can make it look like a robbery gone wrong or make it a accident she works at Walmart she gets off at 11:00 (sic)."

He said his wife's insurance policy was for US$1 million, and offered up his four-year-old daughter, and her US$500,000 policy, as a "bounes (sic)".

Lytle was arrested on Wednesday afternoon (local time) and appeared in court on Thursday, where his bail was set at US$1 million.

He reportedly told investigators he wrote the texts to "vent" but never intended to send them to anyone, and that his daughter may have sent them to his former boss.