“It’s as horrific as it gets:” Marine arrested after being found in child’s room only wearing underwear


A terrifying incident has left the residents of a Michigan township uneasy after a US Marine was accused of breaking into a home and stabbing a child multiple times.

The Grand Rapids community’s collective unease and rage were easily summed up by a local judge. “This is as big as it gets. This case, it’s as scary as it gets. It’s as horrific as it gets. And it puts all of us in a fear zone like no other,” Judge Sara Smolenski stated during the arraignment of 24-year-old Ricardo Perez Castillo on Monday.

Castillo appeared in court via video from the Kent County jail, wearing a suicide prevention bib. He faces multiple charges, including assault with intent to murder, first-degree home invasion, assault with intent to commit criminal sexual conduct, and carrying a weapon with unlawful intent. His bond was set at $2 million cash.

“They’re probably the most serious charges we have,” Kent County Prosecutor Chris Becker said on Monday. “Assault with intent to murder is a life offense, home invasion is a 20-year, assault with intent to commit criminal sexual conduct involving penetration is a 10-year, carrying a weapon with unlawful intent is a 5-year.”

The Kent County Sheriff’s Office reported that Castillo broke into a home on Ella Terrace Court near Rockford early Saturday morning. Once inside, he removed his shoes, socks, and pants, leaving him in just his underwear and a T-shirt.

He then grabbed a knife from the kitchen and proceeded upstairs. According to News 8, court documents reveal that Castillo admitted to intending to kill everyone in the house.

He attempted to enter several bedrooms but found them locked. Eventually, he entered the master bedroom, saw the homeowners, and then sought out a different target. As per the affidavit, Castillo reportedly planned to kill an 11-year-old girl and sexually assault her. He began stabbing her but stopped when the girl’s screams alerted the homeowners.

The enraged homeowner who responded to the screams confronted Castillo and held him at gunpoint until deputies arrived and arrested him. He was found with a bloody knife nearby. The young victim, who was spending the night at her friend’s house, was hospitalized with stab wounds to her left arm and shoulder. She required surgery but was last reported to be in stable condition, according to Undersheriff Bryan Muir.

“It just strikes close to home because they (kids) should be innocent. They shouldn’t have to worry about stuff like this,” Becker said.

“We’re doing everything we can. We’re not going to stand for incidents like this to happen, and we’ll charge them and do what we can to make sure everybody stays safe.”

Initially, the sheriff’s office suggested the attack was random, but the investigation is ongoing. “It’s rare to see a stranger break in like this, but it does happen,” Becker noted.

In addition to the serious charges from the attack, Castillo faces a misdemeanor charge of illegal entry from another incident in Rockford.

His bond for this charge is set at 10% of $5,000. The Michigan State Police database shows that Castillo had no prior criminal record in Michigan before this incident.

He is scheduled to return to court on June 26 for a probable cause conference. Castillo is a Marine corporal who worked as a recruiter in Grand Rapids.

He has served overseas twice and received several awards, including the Naval and Marine Corps Achievement Medal and the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal.

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Author

  • Andy Wolf

    Andy Wolf is an Appalachian native who spent much of his youth and young adulthood overseas in search of combat, riches, and adventure- accruing decades of experience in military, corporate, first responder, journalistic and advisory roles. He resides in North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains with his K9 companion, Kiki.

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