A 1995 killing inside the Attica State Correctional Facility has been solved, and four inmates associated with a notorious prison gang have taken guilty pleas, state attorneys said late Tuesday.
Four inmates associated with the Latin Kings admitted to homicide charges this week in the Sept. 27, 1995, slaying of Michael Washington, 25, a convicted armed robber from New York City.
Washington was stabbed in the heart with a prison-made weapon while "three or four inmates" held him and kept him from running away, authorities said.
Washington's ear and face also were disfigured by severe razor slashes in the attack, which occur red in a prison recreation yard.
"The investigation showed it was an enforcement-type action by the Latin Kings," said Mary C. Baumgarten, a Buffalo prosecutor with the state attorney general's office. "Washington had stolen an Army coat owned by one of the Latin Kings, and there had apparently been several previous incidents in which he stole things from the Latin Kings."
Investigators learned that the prison gang disfigured Washington's face and ear to send a message to other inmates, Ms. Baumgarten said.
Taking plea deals in Wyoming County Court Monday before Judge Robert C. Noonan were: Luis Villanueva, who pleaded to first-degree manslaughter and faces 10 to 20 years added on to his existing sentence; Jason Carro, first-degree attempted manslaughter, 4 1/2 to nine years; Miguel Lopez, first-degree attempted manslaughter, three to six years; Alex Torres, second-degree manslaughter, three to six years. All are in their 20s and from the New York City area.