Trial begins for Leon Jacob in high profile murder-for-hire case

KTRK logo
Tuesday, March 20, 2018
EMBED <>More Videos

Murder for hire trial

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The man accused of hiring a hitman to kill his ex-girlfriend is undergoing testimony during his trial.

EXPLORE THE CASE: Anatomy of one of the most intriguing Houston criminal cases in recent memory

Well-known Montrose veterinarian Valerie McDaniel jumped to her death weeks after she and Jacob were arrested, accused of hiring a hitman to kill their exes.

Prosecutors say Jacob's life was spiraling out of control after his ex-girlfriend dumped him in early 2017.

According to reports, Jacob had racked up assault and stalking charges against her, and authorities say Jacob wanted her dead to keep her from testifying against him.

His attorney George Parnham insists Jacob wanted to talk to his ex and win her back.

"I think it takes a quantum leap of imagination to think that you turn from a lover to a killer of the person that you loved," said Parnham.

Jacob's ex-girlfriend was allegedly supposed to be kidnapped, threatened and killed if she became uncooperative.

The first witness to take the stand was Houston Councilman Michael Kubosh.

Kubosh is the owner of a bail bonds company and handled Jacob's bond when he was arrested for allegedly stalking his ex.

According to Kubosh, Jacob showed up to his office acting aggressive and making accusations that Kubosh knew a hitman.

"He told me he had paid this man Zack a lot of money to take care of this matter," said Kubosh.

Kubosh testified in court that he had no idea what Jacob was talking about, but that it was clear he wanted someone dead.

"To be honest with you I felt like I was talking to the devil himself," said Kubosh.

The councilman contacted police, and authorities worked with an investigation unit to set up an undercover officer to act as Jacob's hitman.

Authorities convinced both Jacob's and McDaniel's exes to pose for pictures. McDaniel's ex-husband posed as if he had been shot and killed in his vehicle, and Jacob's ex-girlfriend posed as if she had been kidnapped.

Jacob and McDaniel were both arrested in March 2017.

Jacob is charged with solicitation of capital murder and aggravated kidnapping.

SEE ALSO: Exclusive interview with Leon Jacob

In an exclusive interview with Eyewitness News, Jacob said he is not a monster and reveals his life behind bars since the arrest. He has been in jail without bond since March 2017, despite many attempts to requests to be let out.