Rapist gets 15 years in prison

Brian H. Mitchell finally got his day in court Monday and he pled guilty in circuit court to raping a 15-year-old girl in northwest Hancock County in 2007.

Mitchell, 43, was sentenced to 15 years in prison, Assistant District Attorney Chris Fisher said. The sentence will have to be served in full because it is a sex offense, FIsher said.

It took a long time to get Mitchell into a courtroom, mainly because he had become quite adept at evading law enforcement after the rape in May 2007, officials said.
After the rape, Hancock County Sheriff’s Department identified Mitchell as a suspect in the case, but were unable to locate him.

Investigators enlisted the help of the U.S. Marshal’s Fugitive Task Force to help locate him.

Mitchell was caught two weeks later when federal agents located him in his vehicle at a rest stop near Tampa, Fl.

He was extradited back to Hancock County on May 25, 2007,
Despite being a flight risk, Mitchell was given a $20,000 bond and promptly disappeared again once he posted bond.

Last year, the fugitive task force was called in again and with the assistance of the Los Angeles-based Pacific Region Task Force, he was located in a half-way house in Santa Barbara, Ca.

He was using the name Brian Stockstill, authorities said.
Fisher said the case was a “very serious” one and the state was persistent in capturing Mitchell and bringing him to justice.

“This proves that cases do not just go away,” Fisher said. “We will pursue people around the country and make them stand trial.”

Fisher said the victim’s family was consulted and satisfied with the 15-year sentence.

Mitchell was transported to the Pearl River County Jail, where he will await transportation to the Mississippi Department of Corrections.

BY: Dwayne Bremer

The Sea Coast Echo


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