A Washington Park business owner has admitted that he offered an employee $600 to strangle his girlfriend, dismember her body and bring back a severed hand as proof of her death.

Christopher Hemminghaus of High Ridge, Missouri, pleaded guilty Thursday to destruction of evidence and use of a telephone with the intent that murder be committed.

Hemminghaus owns a Washington Park pawn shop. And federal prosecutors in East St. Louis say he told an employee to follow the woman to her home, kill her and then use a reciprocating saw from the pawn shop to dismember her body.

The employee went to the FBI, and the woman wasn't harmed.

Hemminghaus is scheduled to be sentenced April 18.