Inmate gets 38 years for razor blade attack on corrections officer

During an interview with police, Raul Sotelo told investigators that it was "his intention to kill Officer Mackenzie Malott"


By Kim Dunlap
Kokomo Tribune

PERU, Ind. — A Miami Correctional Facility inmate convicted of attacking a correctional officer with an edged weapon in July 2020 has been sentenced to 38 years in the Indiana Department of Correction.

Raul Sotelo, of Lake County, was already serving a life sentence in prison, with the possibility of parole, for his conviction in the September 1973 murder of a 12-year-old Lake County girl.

Raul Sotelo was already serving a life sentence for the murder of a 12-year-old girl.
Raul Sotelo was already serving a life sentence for the murder of a 12-year-old girl. (Photo/Miami County Sheriff's Office)

This latest sentencing, according to the Miami County Prosecutor's Office, all but ensures that Sotelo will serve the rest of his life in prison, as this sentence will run consecutively with his already established life sentence.

On July 1, 2020, according to court records, MCF Correctional Officer Mackenzie Malott was assigned to MCF's Phase 1 yard, and he was conducting searches of the inmates when Sotelo reportedly "attacked him with a homemade edged weapon that consisted of a razor blade wrapped with cardboard as a handle."

During the attack, Sotelo slashed Malott on the left side of his face, court records indicate, leaving a gash from the back of his jawline to his chin. Authorities say that gash — which required eight stitches and also left a permanent scar — ended up being approximately 5 inches in length and about a half-inch deep. Court records note that Sotelo also attempted to slice Malott in the lower abdomen during the attack.

During an interview with police regarding the incident, according to court documents, Sotelo told investigators that it was "his intention to kill Officer Malott."

On Wednesday, Lead Prosecutor Courtney Alwine told the court that such a statement was just one of many reasons why Sotelo should never be released from prison.

During her argument portion of the sentencing hearing, Alwine asked for Sotelo to have the maximum sentence that could be allowed for the charge he was facing (40 years).

"I understand this (type of sentence) is for the worst of the worst," she stated, "but I'd argue that Mr. Sotelo is the worst of the worst."

Alwine also brought up Sotelo's 1974 murder conviction, in which police reports from that time state that the defendant admitted he ran over the 12-year-old girl multiple times with a vehicle after she refused to have sex with him.

"There is clearly no remorse for his actions," Alwine told the court Wednesday. "... He is the killer people say he is."

Per law, Sotelo has 30 days to appeal his sentencing, though his attorney Kristina Lynn told the court Wednesday that's unlikely to occur.

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(c)2022 the Kokomo Tribune (Kokomo, Ind.)

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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