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Who Is Darin Schilmiller? New Details On The Man Who Posed As A Millionaire And Convinced Teens To Kill Friend

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Who Is Darin Scilmiller? New Details On The Man Who Posed As A Millionaire And Convinced Teens To Kill Friend

The internet is a tremendous tool with countless possible uses. Most commonly, it's used to help people connect no matter how far apart they may be geographically. But sometimes, all of this connecting can have dangerous real world consequences. Best case scenario, someone lies about their weight, worst case scenario...someone winds up dead. 

When Cynthina Hoffman set out on an afternoon adventure with her best friend she had no idea it would also be the last outing she ever enjoyed. Thanks to the evil machinations of Darin Schilmiller, Cynthia was about to be murdered by one of her best friends and all because of a case of catfishing that went seriously wrong. Who is Darin Schilmiller?

1. Darin Schilmiller 

In the quiet town of New Salisbury, Indiana, right on the border of Kentucky, everyone knew 21-year-old Darin Schilmiller. But not everyone knew about the dark plot unfolding courtesy of an alter-ego Schilmiller adopted on the internet. Schilmiller had experience with putting on other personas and catfishing people on the web, but his latest scheme went too far. 

Now, Darin and six other people (including minors) have  been arrested and charged with murder. Of course, the five people who allegedly helped Darin commit this henious act had no idea that he was involved. That's because he convinced them all that someone else was pulling the stings, someone richer and much more powerful and they fell for it, hook line and sinker. 

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2. Cynthia Hoffman 

19-year-old Cynthia Hoffman's remains were found on June 4th. According to the authorities who located the teen girl, there is no doubt whatsoever that she met her end through malicious and homicidal intent. She was found bound and shot in the head excution-style. Authorities add that once she was shot, her body was shoved into a river. Talk about cruelty. 

Cynthia was killed far, far away from Indiana, in Alaska. Once upon a time that kind of distance would have made Darin's involvement in the crime impossible. But thanks to the internet, he was able to orchestrate the teenager's, a complete stranger, death. So who was willing to do whatever Darin asked and why? What did he have to offer them in exchange?

3. The Millionaire 

As Darin, he had nothing that he could offer to arrange a kill, but as imaginary millionaire "Tyler," he had $9 million imaginary dollars to present to 18-year-old Denali Brehmer, who he met online. For months, Darin (posing as Tyler) and Denali exchanged text messages of love and affection, but the sweet nothings of their internet romance weren't always so sunny.

As Tyler, the financial mogul from Kansas (a far cry from Darin living in rural Indiana) he felt free to share his darker fantasies with Denali, telling her all about his secret desire to have someone raped and killed. That's when the two began to hatch the plan. What Denali didn't know was that murder wasn't the only crime that Darin had on his mind. 

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4. Child Porn 

While those who knew Darin were shocked to hear about his involvement in this murder, they weren't surprised to hear that the FBI was already investigating Darin for child porn charges. "I don't think that anybody thought he would ever kill anybody but the child pornography—he definitely had a problem there," said Jade Pohle, who attended middle school and high school with Darin.

Jade reported Darin asking her for inappropriate photographs of herself in bathing suits while she was underage, and other women reported that Darin would frequently create fake personas on the web and use them to ask for photographs of babies having their diapers changed. In fact, some said that Darin's penchant for child porn was an open secret in the small town where he lived. 

5. Co-Defendants 

According to authorities, after being encouraged by Darin in the guise of Tyler and offered $9 million dollars, Denali (also known as Angel) enlisted four of her friends, Caleb Leyland, 19; Kayden McIntosh, 16; and two other defendants who are underage, and set about tricking and murdering Cynthia Hoffman, who was Denali's so-called best friend. 

Currently, Darin is being transferred from the State Marshalls to Alaska where he will be tried. The other five defendants are all in the process of being arraigned. It will likely be a long ordeal for everyone involved, perhaps most of all for the family of Cynthia Hoffman who lost their daughter to a senseless and violence end. 

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Rebecca Jane Stokes is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York with her cats, Batman and Margot. She's an experienced generalist with a passion for lifestyle, geek news, pop culture, and true crime.