‘Sweetie Pie’s’ star pleads not guilty in murder-for-hire plot linked to nephew

Credit: Via YouTube

Credit: Via YouTube

Tim Norman has been accused of paying for his nephew to be killed

Tim Norman, who starred on OWN’s “Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s," has entered a not-guilty plea to charges that he orchestrated his nephew’s fatal shooting four years ago.

Norman, 41, entered the plea Tuesday in a St. Louis federal court, according to a St. Louis Post-Dispatch report. He is one of three defendants charged in the plot to murder Andre Montgomery Jr., the grandson of Sweetie Pie’s owner Robbie Montgomery, in March 2016. He is charged with conspiracy to use interstate commerce facilities (cellphone) in the commission of a murder-for-hire and conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud.

Federal Chief Magistrate Judge Nannette Baker heard arguments in a detention hearing for Norman on Tuesday. A decision has not been made about whether Norman will be held in custody while awaiting trial. Norman’s defense attorney John Rogers argued Norman is not a likely flight risk and should be released to stay with his mother.

ExplorePolice seek witnesses in 2016 killing of Sweetie Pie’s owner’s family member

Robbie Montgomery owns the popular restaurant chain and featured her family, including Norman and Andre Montgomery Jr., on the show.

Federal authorities allege Norman obtained several life insurance policies on Montgomery, his nephew, in November 2014. Norman was the sole beneficiary on the policies, according to People. Those policies include a life insurance policy for $250,000 through Americo Insurance Company, as well as two different policies through Foresters Insurance for $200,000 and $250,000, according to the complaint.

In 2015, he attempted to obtain a replacement policy through Foresters Insurance but was denied, according to the complaint.

“The applications of all these policies contained numerous false statements regarding Montgomery’s income, occupation, and family history,” the complaint reads.

Days prior to Montgomery’s killing, Terica Ellis told Montgomery she would travel from Memphis, Tennessee, to St. Louis to visit him. On March 13, 2016, a day before Montgomery was killed, Norman flew from Los Angeles to St. Louis.

Andre Montgomery, left, comedian Chris Tucker and Charles Crenchaw, Montgomery's cousin and cast mate on "Welcome to Sweetie Pie's"

Credit: Via Facebook

Credit: Via Facebook

The following day, Ellis and Norman communicated using newly activated temporary phones. Ellis also used the temporary phone to communicate with Montgomery and determine his location. Once Montgomery’s location was discovered, Ellis placed a call to Norman. About 8 p.m. that same day, Montgomery was shot and killed. Ellis' phone location services place her in the area of the murder at the time of the shooting.

Prosecutors said the nature of the crime, the volume of evidence in the case and Norman’s criminal record should require he be held until trial.

Ellis, also pleaded not guilty in federal court last month and will be held in jail until trial. Prosecutors allege Norman paid Ellis about $10,000 to lure Andre Montgomery onto Natural Bridge Avenue in St. Louis where he was killed.

In Other News