The lead singer of Christian heavy metal band “As I Lay Dying” tried to hire a hit man to kill his estranged wife, authorities said.
Grammy-nominated rocker Tim Lambesis, 32, was arrested in a sting operation 2 p.m. Tuesday in Oceanside, Southern California.
Authorities said they sprang into action after hearing Thursday how he wanted someone to murder Meggan Lambesis — the mother of his three adopted children.
“The information came to us late last week. We acted quickly on it. I believe we averted a great tragedy,” said Jan Caldwell of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department.
Heavily tattooed Lambesis, who lives 20 miles north of San Diego in Del Mar, was served with divorce papers by his wife in September 2012.
The long-haired singer’s band, formed in 2000, has released six albums.
Its most successful was “An Ocean Between Us” which soared to No. 8 on the Billboard charts in 2007.
His group had recently returned from tour in Asia, reports Billboard.com.
Metal Blade, the group’s record label, has not commented on the arrest.
Lambesis, who was charged with solicitation of another to commit murder, is due in court for arraignment Wednesday or Thursday.