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Press Release

Federal Inmate Pleads Guilty to Murdering Fellow Inmate

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Michigan

DETROIT – A federal inmate pleaded guilty today to murdering a fellow inmate at the Milan Correctional Institution in Milan, Michigan, announced United States Attorney Dawn N. Ison.

Ison was joined in the announcement by James A. Tarasca, Special Agent in Charge of the Detroit Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Jonathan Hemingway, Warden, Milan Federal Correctional Institution.

Alex Albert Castro, 42, a former resident of Fontana, California, pleaded guilty today to second degree murder before United States District Court Judge Jonathan J.C. Grey.

According to court records, on January 2, 2019, Castro, along with co-defendants Jason Kechego, 41, and Adam Taylor Wright, 42, killed fellow inmate Christian Maire. Castro repeatedly stabbed Maire while Kechego and Wright kicked and stomped him in the head. Castro, along with his two co-defendants, then threw Maire’s body down a flight of stairs. Maire died from multiple stab wounds (28 total) and blunt force trauma to the head from being thrown down the stairs.

Castro’s plea agreement calls for a possible sentence of up to life in prison, which could be imposed concurrently, partially concurrently, or consecutively to the 42-year sentence Castro is already serving for his underlying 2017 federal drug trafficking conviction.

In 2022, Wright pleaded guilty to second degree murder and was sentenced to just over 24 years of imprisonment. Kechego was convicted at trial of second degree murder and sentenced to 28 years of imprisonment.  At that same trial, the jury was unable to agree on a verdict for Castro and a mistrial was declared.

“This savage crime deserves the most serious of consequences. My office is committed to preventing violence wherever it occurs.  These convictions show that we will not turn a blind eye to this type of conduct and will aggressively prosecute violence within our prisons,” said U.S. Attorney Ison.

“The senseless murder committed by Mr. Wright and his codefendants jeopardized the safety of corrections officers, staff, and inmates,” said James A. Tarasca, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Detroit Field Office. “The FBI will continue to work with the Bureau of Prisons to hold violent offenders accountable for the crimes they commit while behind bars.”

Sentencing has been set for July 28, 2023 at 10am.

This case was investigated by special agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Frances Lee Carlson and Andrew R. Picek.

Updated March 30, 2023

Violent Crime