COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) — A federal judge has decided that Columbus Police vice detective Andrew Mitchell will remain in jail.
The decision came during Mitchell’s detention hearing Wednesday.
The U.S. Attorney’s office argued its evidence against Mitchell is strong saying Mitchell can’t be trusted, and he grossly violated his oath of office as a sworn police officer.
They also said the victims and witnesses are terrified of Mitchell and fear retaliation by him or other officers for coming forward.
“If you have a police officer who is out there not only committing crimes, but using the office of police authority to commit those crimes that’s about a serious as you can have,” said U.S. Attorney Ben Glassman.
Federal authorities based their argument on the seven-count indictment that was unsealed on Monday. The indictment claimed Mitchell continued his criminal activity by witness tampering after he found out about the allegations.
Mitchell is accused of kidnapping two women under the guise of an arrest and forcing them to have sex with him so they could be let go.
Federal authorities told the judge the victims have never met Mitchell before he picked them up and didn’t even know his name.
The indictment did not name the victims.
Mitchell’s attorney, Mark Collins, says they know names of four people who they believe may be victims in this case.
“Of the people we’re aware of, our client has known since 2014. He’s had a rental agreement with two of them he’s had to evict one of them he’s also had another he has been an employee,” said Collins.
Collins said he has evidence pertaining to the witness tampering charge.
“We have texts showing my client them tell the truth go there and tell the truth the government is going to have a different take,” said Collins.
In court, Collins pointed out that Mitchell went to Vegas last September and came back to return to work.
Collins will argue for Mitchell’s release again next week during his arraignment where he says Mitchell will plead not guilty all the charges.