Trial for Plastic Surgeon Accused of Hiring Hit Man Begins

Trial is set to begin for an Amarillo plastic surgeon accused in a murder-for-hire plot to kill a Lubbock pathologist who was dating his former girlfriend.

Prosecutors and attorneys for 50-year-old Dr. Thomas Michael Dixon, who's been jailed since his arrest, were scheduled to give opening statements in the capital murder trial Monday in Lubbock.

Prosecutors said Dixon offered another man three silver bars worth $9,000 to kill Dr. Joseph Sonnier III in July 2012. The 57-year-old chief pathologist of a Lubbock hospital was dating Dixon's ex-girlfriend when he died.

The hit man is serving life in prison without parole as part of a plea deal. Prosecutors said he used a gun Dixon had given him.

Prosecutors recently decided to not seek the death penalty for Dixon.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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