Salem man sentenced to life in prison for grisly 2020 stabbing, cover-up of teen’s body

A Marion County Circuit Court judge on Thursday sentenced a Salem man to life in prison for stabbing a teen in early 2020 and hiding his body for months before deputies found it under duplex.

Alexander J. Mosqueda Rivera-Burdette, 21 of Salem, must serve at least 26 years in prison before he can petition the state’s parole board to be considered for release. He was also sentenced to a lifetime of post-prison supervision if he is released, according to court documents.

The sentence comes over two months after Judge Channing Bennett found him guilty of second-degree murder, tampering with physical evidence and two counts of abusing a corpse.

Mosqueda Rivera-Burdette fatally stabbed 18-year-old Josiah Bagnall of Salem before burying him, later digging up his body and burying it again between the areas of Hayesville and North Lancaster. He also dismembered the teen’s body.

Authorities have released no information about what prompted the attack, but prosecutors say Mosqueda Rivera-Burdette stabbed Bagnall more than 20 times. Both were 18 years old at the time.

On June 10, 2020, a family living in the 3600 block of Northeast 47th Avenue reported a foul odor coming from underneath their duplex, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release at the time.

Responding deputies found human remains in the property’s crawl space.

The state Medical Examiner’s Office determined the manner of death was a homicide, but detectives were initially unable to identify the victim. After the sheriff’s office released a sketch of one of the victim’s tattoos, tips from the public helped investigators identify him as Bagnall.

Detectives later identified Mosqueda Rivera-Burdette as a suspect in Bagnall’s death and learned the teen was killed in early 2020 at an apartment in the 4600 block of Northeast Silverton Road.

He was arrested on July 2, 2020, and booked into the Marion County Jail.

Ahead of his recent trial, Mosqueda Rivera-Burdette filed a notice in court that he intended to argue he killed Bagnall in self-defense. He was found guilty on all charges following a two-day bench trial – with a judge, not a jury, deciding a verdict.

Mosqueda Rivera-Burdette was also charged in May 2020 with two counts of unlawful entry into a motor vehicle, interfering with a peace officer and unlawful possession of a firearm. Court records showed the case remained open as of Friday.

He also has previous adjudications in juvenile court for fourth-degree assault, menacing and unlawful use of a weapon, according to a sentencing memorandum filed by prosecutors.

Contact reporter Ardeshir Tabrizian: [email protected] or 503-929-3053.

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Ardeshir Tabrizian has covered criminal justice and housing for Salem Reporter since September 2021. As an Oregon native, his award-winning watchdog journalism has traversed the state. He has done reporting for The Oregonian, Eugene Weekly and Malheur Enterprise.