ST. LOUIS – A key player charged in the murder-for-hire plot that left the grandson of the owner of Sweetie Pie’s Restaurant dead goes on trial Tuesday, September 6.
Jury selection is taking place Tuesday morning at the Eagleton Federal Courthouse in the trial of James “Tim” Norman. That trial is taking place before Judge John Ross.
The victim who was killed in this case was 21-year-old Andre Montgomery Jr. Norman is Montgomery’s uncle – he’s charged with two counts of murder for hire conspiracy and two counts of wire and mail fraud conspiracy.
Montgomery was shot to death in March of 2016 on Natural Bridge in the Greater Ville neighborhood of north St. Louis. Federal authorities said Norman put a hit out on his nephew to get the money from Montgomery’s life insurance policy. There were already guilty pleas earlier this year in the case.
Exotic dancer Terica Ellis pleaded guilty to helping Norman and a hitman find Montgomery. Travell Hill, who was the hitman, admitted to killing Montgomery in exchange for $5,000. As part of Hill’s plea deal, he said that Norman hired him for the murder and that Norman also hired Ellis to help locate Montgomery prior to the killing.
Norman and Montgomery were both on the reality TV show Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s. The popular show aired on the Oprah Winfrey Network for several seasons. It was about a soul food restaurant business founded by Robbie Montgomery in the St. Louis area.
We’re told opening statements in Norman’s trial could come later Tuesday or Wednesday.