Indiana

Man convicted in deadly blast faces murder-for-hire trial

A man serving two life sentences in a deadly Indianapolis house explosion faces trial on a murder-for-hire charge.

Prosecutors say 47-year-old Mark Leonard tried to hire a hit man to kill a key witness in the house explosion case while he was in jail.

The Indianapolis Star reports (http://indy.st/2kh67BT ) that Leonard's trial on a conspiracy to commit murder charge begins Monday.

Prosecutors say Leonard spearheaded the plot to destroy his then-girlfriend's house with a natural gas explosion to claim insurance money. The November 2012 explosion killed a couple who lived next door and damaged dozens of homes.

Leonard was convicted in 2015 of murder, arson and other charges. He received two life sentences without parole, plus 75 years.

Four other people, including Leonard's half brother, were also convicted.

___

Information from: The Indianapolis Star, http://www.indystar.com