FBI offers $50,000 reward for capture, conviction of jail escapee Alder Marin-Sotelo

Wednesday, May 3, 2023
FBI steps up search for escaped inmates
The FBI announced that there is now a $50,000 reward being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of Alder Marin-Sotelo.

FARMVILLE, Va. (WTVD) -- There's now a $50,000 reward being offered for information that helps the FBI track down, arrest and convict one of the men who recently escaped a jail in Virginia.

Alder Marin-Sotelo is considered extremely dangerous, the FBI said. Anyone who sees him should call 911 immediately.

He's one of two men charged in connection to the August 2022 murder of Wake County Deputy Ned Byrd.

The FBI released a new image of the Ford Mustang that jail escapee Alder Marin-Sotelo was believed to be driving during his getaway.

He was being held in Piedmont Regional Jail in Farmville, Virginia, on federal firearm violations. On April 30, he made a break for it and has not been seen since.

"We are there assisting all of our local, state and federal partners. We have left no resources unused in this effort. We will continue to work with all our partners, and it's just a tremendous effort being done now," Tony Godwin, a chief with the Wake County Sheriff's Office, said.

Court records name sister as accomplice

On Tuesday morning, federal court documents uncovered by ABC11 revealed that Marin-Sotelo's sister, 31-year-old Adriana Marin-Sotelo, had been arrested in High Point on accusations she helped him escape the Virginia jail.

Investigators said Adriana paid someone $2,500 to leave a car in the jail parking lot for Alder to use to make his escape.

Jail surveillance video recorded Alder jumping the jail fence around 1:40 a.m. Sunday and getting into an early 2000s red or burgundy Ford Mustang with a 30-day temporary tag. The FBI released images of the vehicle, but at this point, it and Alder remain at large.

RELATED | Man charged in Deputy Ned Byrd murder case escapes from jail in Virginia

Before that could happen, the vehicle had to be taken to the jail parking lot. According to the federal criminal complaint, plans for that began April 28. Inmates in the jail worked with family members and friends outside the jail to arrange to have someone pick up the car in High Point and park it at the jail by midnight on April 29.

Investigators said surveillance video showed the Mustang arriving at the parking lot around 10:45 p.m. on April 29. Three hours later, Alder is seen on video scaling the jail fence, getting into the Mustang and driving off.

The FBI announced that there is now a $50,000 reward being offered for information leading to the the arrest and conviction of Alder Marin-Sotelo.

The federal court complaint then reveals that the people who dropped the Mustang off in the parking lot were expecting to receive a second $2,500 payment, but that payment never arrived.

Adriana Marin-Sotelo faces a charge of conspiracy to instigate or assist escape. Tuesday afternoon, a court ordered her to remain in the custody of the US Marshal's Office. She told the court she was not a U.S. citizen. Her next hearing is scheduled for 3 p.m. on Friday.

U.S. Marshal details escape theory

The US Marshals are leading the investigation into the escape of Alder, 26, and another inmate, Bruce Callahan, 44, according to an ABC News source familiar with the investigation.

"They somehow, we think, were potentially able to manipulate some locks, crawled through an opening that led them out into the rec yard area. And then from there, they scaled two fences to get away from the jail," US Marshal for the Eastern District of North Carolina Larry Moltzan told ABC News in an exclusive interview.

Moltzan told ABC News that one left 20 hours before the other, but he said he believes they might've talked about the escape.

"I think it's like it's fair to reason that they may have talked about it, given that it was so similar," Moltzan said. "But they did not escape at the same time and didn't necessarily help each other in that way."

Alder and his brother Arturo have been indicted on murder charges in the August 2022 killing of deputy Ned Byrd. Byrd was shot three times in the head and once in the chest while checking on suspicious activity on Battle Bridge Road near Auburn Knightdale Road.

Law enforcement officials told ABC News that both are believed to be "dangerous men."

"Bruce Callahan has an extensive criminal history involving firearms and drug offenses," Moltzan said. "Mr. Sotelo was charged federally with weapons possession by an illegal alien, but he is also wanted in Wake County, North Carolina, for a homicide of a law enforcement officer. So we certainly believe that they're both dangerous men. They certainly could pose a danger to the community. And we would ask that if anybody sees them to contact law enforcement immediately."

He said he believes they both have the ability to obtain weapons.

"We would certainly believe that both of them have a potential to be armed and both of them are extremely dangerous," he said. "The nature of chasing fugitives is they could really be anywhere. We believe there's a strong possibility that they could be in North Carolina and may be looking to go elsewhere."

'Dire need of detention officers'

Nash County Sheriff Keith Stone knows all too well the grim circumstances surrounding a jailbreak.

He had one in 2019 when inmates walked up under the wire and got out.

Stone told ABC11 that he is short more than 10 officers and said every sheriff across the state is having issues finding detention officers

"We're in dire need of detention officers. Every sheriff I speak to is very short," Stone said. "You've got to have professional people working in these detention facilities that are honorable, have integrity about themselves and the work ethic to manage the inmate."

About the Marin-Sotelo case, Stone said there are good reasons law enforcement officers are working so intently to find him.

"This is the case where a man was gone 25 hours," Stone said. "He is a cop killer. He needs to be caught, he needs to be caught immediately."

He said the possibility of inmates breaking out is always real and present.

"It's not an impossibility," Stone said. "After I walked into our county jail in Nash County a few years back, and I look at 40 inmates and then there's a sign that says exit in the back of the building and the inmates have access to that lock.

"What's really scary, some law enforcement officer has to take him back into custody. He's got a family and he might not go home," Stone added. "A man on the run that is a cop killer is a dangerous person and there's no telling where he might wind up in."

Photo: FBI