DNA helps solve pistol-whipping assault, robbery

Kevin Mitchell Jr., 22, pictured in his jail booking photo. (Credit: Multnomah County Sheriff's Office. June 10, 2013).
Kevin Mitchell Jr., 22, pictured in his jail booking photo. (Credit: Multnomah County Sheriff's Office. June 10, 2013).

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Detectives have arrested a 22-year-old man and linked him to a violent robbery, court documents state.

Kevin Mitchell Jr. appeared in Multnomah County Circuit Court Thursday afternoon on charges of assault and robbery.

On June 4, 2012, an employee of the Max Mart and Deli told officers he was robbed at 8:55 p.m. at gunpoint by two men.

Police arrived and found the employee’s face swelling and bleeding. He was getting medical aid from paramedics because he had been pistol whipped, court documents state.

Officers learned the man was behind the cash register, getting ready to make sure the nightly money was deposited when two young black men entered the store, Deputy District Attorney Jenna Plank wrote in court documents.

One of the robbers grabbed the employee around the neck, pointed a gun at his face and then hit him in the nose with the butt of the gun, Plank said.

The victim told police he was hit in the face with the gun at least three times, records state.

While the attack occurred, Plank wrote in court documents, Mitchell removed all of the money from the cash drawer.

Police said the amount stolen was between $1,500 and $1,800.

Officers conducted a search of the area after getting a 911 call. The employee said the suspects ran south from the business located at 12128 East Burnside into a parking garage near Ventura Park.

Police talked to various witnesses who told them they had seen two young men matching the robbers’ description in the area, records state.

A police K9 was called to the scene and detected human scent in the area. Officers said the dog alerted to the clothing as being consistent with items discarded by a fleeing suspect, Plank stated in court documents.

The clothing items were turned over to the Oregon State Police crime lab for testing which showed they contained DNA matching Mitchell, Plank wrote.

Robbery Detective Daren Posey interviewed Mitchell who later admitted he was involved in the Max Mart robbery, Plank said.

Mitchell reportedly apologized that his co-conspirator had struck the clerk in the face, records state.

Officers said Mitchell admitted he was the person who took the cash, but his accomplice was armed with a airsoft pistol, not a real gun.

Mitchell entered a not guilty plea and is due back in court next week.

Officials said they are looking to see if Mitchell and his accomplice were involved with a robbery that happened on the same day just after midnight.

Anyone who has additional information on the robbery is urged to call Detective Posey at 503.823.0403 or Darren.Posey@portlandoregon.gov


— Brent Weisberg

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