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TFC Stu Recke
Public Affairs Officer
Kentucky State Police
Post 2, Nortonville
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Murder Arrest in Dawson Springs, KY

Date of News Release: 09/28/2006

An image of James R. MitchellDawson Springs, KY (Hopkins County) - On September 27, 2006 at approximately 8:01 a.m., Sandra M. Willis (formerly Sandra M. Stinett) succumbed to her injuries sustained in a house fire that occurred on July 10, 2006 in Dawson Springs, KY and passed away at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center. James Robert Mitchell age 20 of Dawson Springs, KY had previously been charged with Arson First Degree and Attempted Murder. On September 27, 2006, the Kentucky State Police charged Mr. Mitchell with Murder. He has been incarcerated in the Hopkins County Jail since his arrest on August 10, 2006. Mr. Mitchell remains in the Hopkins County Jail with no bond.

On Monday, July 10, 2006 at approximately 5:17 a.m., the Kentucky State Police Post 2 was contacted by the Dawson Springs Fire Department to investigated a structure fire with injuries. The location of the fire was 515 East Keigan Street in the limits of Dawson Springs.

Two subjects were inside the home at the time of the fire. Sandra M. Willis age 37 of Dawson Springs, KY, the owner of the home, was transported to the Regional Medical Center. She was then transferred to the Vanderbilt Medical Center for treatment of severe burns to her body. Her friend, James Robert Mitchell age 20 of Dawson Springs, KY, was transported to the Regional Medical Center for treatment of minor burns to his hands. He was treated and released.

On August 9, 2006 KSP Arson Investigator Damon Fleming obtained an arrest warrant for James Robert Mitchell on the charges of arson 1st degree and attempted murder. The charges stem from an investigation that began on July 10, 2006. The Kentucky State Police then contacted other law enforcement agencies in Hopkins County for assistance in locating Mr. Mitchell.

On Thursday, August 10, 2006 at approximately 8:43 p.m., the Dawson Springs Police Department located Mr. Mitchell at a residence on East Walnut in Dawson Springs. The Dawson Springs Police Department executed the arrest warrant and arrested Mr. Mitchell. He was lodged in the Hopkins County Detention Center and charged with Arson 1st Degree and Attempted Murder.

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