Isaiah Carvalho Jr. was happy to almost be done with his divorce. He had been through years of Hell, a messy custody battle, and constant harassment from his former wife. Still, he was confident as he woke up on Friday morning, that after all the trouble she had put him through for the past five months, his life was about to turn a corner.
Unfortunately for him, things were not as settled as he thought them to be and the knock at the door was about to tell him something very different. Isiah opened the door to find an FBI agent standing there. Apparently, they had some rather unfortunate news about his soon-to-be former wife…
Officer Valerie Cincinelli was only 30 when she and Isiah Carvalho Jr. decided to tie the knot. He was a former machine operator in Nassau County and she was an NYPD police officer, but despite their seemingly divergent career paths, they worked together; for a time anyway. The ensuing divorce was messy but it seemed that they’d finally reached a settlement outside of court.
As it turned out, part of the reason things appeared so “settled”, at least from Cincinelli’s end of things, anyway, was due to the fact that she was certain she wouldn’t have to deal with her ex-husband for much longer. By that, we mean that she had made plans through her current boyfriend to have Carvalho killed by a hit man…
Cincinelli had asked her current boyfriend to help her hire a hitman to take out her soon-to-be ex-husband and on February 18th of 2019, she met the man in person. Before that, however, she went to her bank in Wantagh, NY and withdrew $7,000. Her boyfriend went to his bank in Massapequa Park, NY and bought five ounces of gold coins worth $6,935. The killer apparently preferred to be paid in gold.
The police officer and her hit man had discussed the heinous plot over the preceding months. And over the course of their discussions, it turned out, Cincinelli didn’t just want Carvalho dead; she also had someone else for the man to kill as well. This other target was also someone fairly close to her; a young teenage girl that she knew quite well…
Even before the FBI agents showed up to his house, Carvalho knew that his wife was dangerous. Both he and his estranged spouse had orders of protection against each other. This, along with several other incidents of rule-breaking on her part, found her placed on desk duty at the NYPD prior to securing her hit man. It seemed even her fellow officers had their own concerns about her volatile nature.
The plan was to have Carvalho killed near his workplace in Holtsville, NY, where he was selling fireworks. Carvahlo frequently had a lot of cash on him, so the hitman was to make the murder look like a robbery gone wrong. A week before the hit on the husband, however, the hit man had been tasked with killing another person, someone even the hitman was surprised about.
The person was her current boyfriend’s teenage daughter. The hitman asked why, but she did not tell him why she wanted her current boyfriend’s teenage daughter dead. She also didn’t make any suggestions as to the method, as she had with her husband, but suggested that the hitman run her over with his car. Her boyfriend, while aware that she was planning to have her husband killed, didn’t know anything about the hit man’s other assignment.
Months passed and the hit hadn’t happened. By May, Cincinelli’s boyfriend was beginning to express concerns about the murder. He was mostly concerned that it might arouse suspicion from her superiors. Unbeknownst to him, however, she had already instructed the hitman to kill them in separate weeks and locations. She was covering her own bases…
The Deed Is Done
Sometime later, Officer Cincinelli opened the front door of her Long Island home to find several grim-looking police officers. They had come to inform her that her estranged husband had been found murdered. She was impressed but a little annoyed as well. The hitman had gone against her wishes and killed the husband first.
An Officer of the Law
Later that same morning, Cincinelli, who had once worked in a domestic violence unit in Queens, NY, received a new text message from her hit man. The content of the message was a text saying that the deed was done, along with a photograph of what appeared to be Carvahlo dead in his car. There was also another message in the text as well…
Despite the snafus in the plan, Cincinelli was confident that she and her boyfriend had the perfect alibis for Carvahlo’s murder and the killing of the subsequent teen. She and her boyfriend had discussed these alibis at length over the past couple months. Little did she know that her plan was doomed from the very moment she involved the boyfriend at all.
The new message was a demand for an additional $3,000 for him to kill the teenage girl. He was upping his price and now Cincinelli had a real problem on her hands. She instructed him to delete the messages in case the police subpoenaed the phone, unaware that her problems were about to get much bigger than that. Isiah Carvalho, you see, wasn’t dead at all…
More than that, Cincinelli had been set up almost from the start. The hit man she had been paying off, meeting with, and texting for months was not an assassin at all; but an undercover FBI agent. One whom her boyfriend had gone to almost from the start. He had his theories about Cincinelli’s plans for his daughter and it turned out he was right.
54-year-old John DiRubba pretended to go along with Valerie Cincinelli’s plan from the very start. He went to the authorities as soon as he was able but remained with her as the FBI worked to build a case against her. He allowed himself to be wired and successfully recorded numerous conversations with the former police officer about the nature of the planned murder….
Setting Her Up
All the while, Officer Cincinelli continued to work on the second part of the plan in what she believed was secret. She used social media to track the whereabouts of DiRubba’s daughter and kept tabs on her. The FBI wanted to make sure they got her on both counts as well, so they involved Carvahlo by having him pose in his car as if he’d been shot.
Cincinelli was eventually arrested and brought in for questioning. As of this writing, the motives behind the killings are unclear, though we can guess at them. Her relationship with her former spouse was so fractious and volatile and the custody battle so fierce, that she must have felt the only way she could “win” was to have him killed. But why kill DiRubba’s 15-year-old daughter?
John DiRubba spoke to CBS about the whole issue afterward. “My heart is destroyed,” he explained. “I can’t even think straight now. I can’t come to terms that a mother of two, a police officer… wanted to harm my daughter.” Indeed, many cannot believe, even now, how someone like Valerie Cincinelli could do something so absolutely heinous.
Well, besides her father Lou Cincinelli, who apparently believes that DiRubba is a “wacko psycho” who he says “Manipulated multiple conversations to come up with his statements.” He even told CBS that DiRubba is “Very smart, but he’s a pathological liar and there’s something wrong with his brain.” Regardless of these dissenting opinions, however, Valerie is in pretty hot water…
Held Without Bail
The former New York Police Department officer has been charged with plotting to kill her estranged husband and the teenage daughter of her boyfriend. She is currently being held without bail. Frankly, she has no one to blame but herself for all this. Even if it was a sting operation, it is clear from almost all the evidence that she initiated the discussion in the first place.
Cincinelli unscrupulous methods of murder-for-hire didn’t stop her from crying before a federal judge in Central Islip, NY. Despite her lawyer’s pleas and her own 12 years on the force, the judge ordered Cincinelli held without bail on account of the strong evidence of her wrongdoing. It remains to be seen what will become of her in the end.