William Mitchell was executed by the State of Mississippi for the sexual assault and murder of a woman. According to court documents William Mitchell who was released from prison earlier in the year would grab Patty Milliken when she was leaving the convenience store would be sexually assault and murdered. William Mitchell would be arrested, convicted and sentenced to death. William Mitchell would be executed by lethal injection on March 22, 2012
William Mitchell More News
A Mississippi man was executed Thursday for the 1995 slaying of a woman who disappeared from convenience store where she worked in Biloxi.
William Mitchell, 61, was pronounced dead at 6:20 p.m. Thursday after a lethal injection.
Asked whether he wanted to say anything before the chemicals were pumped into his veins, Mitchell emphatically said, “No.”
Dressed in a red jumpsuit, wearing black-and-white sneakers, Mitchell appeared to lick his lips, took a deep breath and exhaled and then yawned. Moments later he closed his eyes and officials pronounced him dead.
Mitchell was convicted in the Nov. 21, 1995, slaying of 38-year-old Patty Milliken, who disappeared after walking out of the Majik Mart convenience store where she worked to have a cigarette with Mitchell.
Her body was found the next day under a bridge. She had been “strangled, beaten, sexually assaulted and repeatedly run over by a vehicle,” according to court records.
Mitchell was convicted of capital murder in Harrison County in 1998.
Two members of Milliken’s family — son, Williams Burns; and a sister, Rosemary Riley — witnessed the execution.
Corrections Commissioner Chris Epps said Mitchell didn’t want any of his own relatives to witness it, but noted that Mitchell’s lawyers were present. Earlier Thursday, he was visited by a brother and two sisters.
Epps said Mitchell was talkative earlier in the day.
“Just small talk … nothing about what he was on death row for,” Epps said.
Mitchell’s last meal request was for fried shrimp and oysters, ranch dressing, two fried chicken breasts, a strawberry shake and a soft drink. Epps said Mitchell ate very little of the meal, but asked for a sedative.
The Mississippi Supreme Court and the U.S. Supreme Court earlier Thursday declined to stop Mitchell’s execution.
Gov. Phil Bryant issued a statement that he would not halt the execution.
“After reviewing the case of William Mitchell and the crime he committed, I will not stand in the way of the scheduled execution. My thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Patty Milliken, who fell victim to this horrible act of violence,” Bryant said in the statement.
Mitchell’s body will be turned over to his sister Gerolyn Mitchell and Brinson Funeral Home in Cleveland, Miss.
Court records show Mitchell, had been out of prison on parole for less than a year for a 1974 murder when he was charged with raping and killing Milliken.
According to court records, Mitchell, as a young adult, served in the Army but by the 1990s, he had a long criminal record and had spent much of his adult life behind bars. He was charged twice with beating women in 1973. In 1974, he was charged with killing a family friend and stabbing her daughter.
In his petition to the Supreme Court, Mitchell had argued the Mississippi courts denied his right to due process by failing to address his challenge that was based on his lawyers’ inadequate representation. He said the courts just ignored the issue by saying it had already been adjudicated elsewhere.
Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood in his brief to the Supreme Court said the issues raised by Mitchell were nothing new and were rejected by other courts