A former New York City police officer who was accused in a murder-for-hire plot was sentenced to four years in prison Friday, according to court records.
Valerie Cincinelli, 37, has been in custody since her arrest in May 2019 and will get credit toward her sentence for the approximately 30 months she has served. Her defense attorney, James Kousouros, said she “will be eligible for release in a matter of months.”
Cincinelli was accused of attempting to have her estranged husband and her boyfriend’s teenaged daughter killed, but the purported hitman was actually an undercover FBI agent, officials have said.
She was an NYPD officer at the time, and was fired after her arrest.
Cincinelli pleaded guilty to one count of obstruction of justice in April related to impeding a federal grand jury investigation by deleting phone records. She had also been charged on murder-for-hire counts, which were dismissed as part of a plea deal.
Kousouros said Friday night that he was pleased with the sentence. He said Cincinelli could be eligible for home confinement in around five months.
“Upon her release she hopes to be reunited with her family and rebuild the productive life she has always led,” Kousouros said in an email.
Prosecutors said in court documents that Cincinelli harbored “deep-seated jealousy and resentment” about her boyfriend’s daughter, and alleged that she tried to get her boyfriend to hire a hitman. Her boyfriend went to the FBI.
Kousouros argued in a sentencing memorandum that Cincinelli never actually wanted anyone killed, and she claimed in court documents that in recorded conversations she was only “venting” her frustrations.
Prosecutors sought a total sentence of five years. They wrote in a sentencing memorandum that “she was not venting — she was plotting,” and had done so for months.
Phil Helsel is a reporter for NBC News.