Man whose brother fatally ingested cocaine rejects plea deal

Deangelo Mitchell enters court Thursday for a plea hearing. Mitchell decided to reject the plea offer and take his chances going to trial. (Brad Nettles/postandcourier.com) 4/4/13 Buy this photo

The man accused of convincing his brother to eat a fatal dose of cocaine rejected a plea deal on Thursday morning that would have put him in jail for 15 years. Now Deangelo Rashard Mitchell, 24, of Clements Avenue could face a minimum of 25 years if he’s convicted in trial, according to a judge.

Mitchell is charged with drug possession, trafficking and involuntary manslaughter for the death of his brother, 20-year-old Wayne Joshua Mitchell, of Ducs Court in Charleston.

In court, Circuit Judge Markley Dennis went over the possible sentence that Mitchell faces if he rejects the offer, which is on the table until tomorrow.

“If they prove it, you’re going to jail for a minimum of 25 years,” Dennis told Mitchell. “I’m not trying to frighten you. I’m just trying to tell you straight up.”

Mitchell said he wanted to see the prosecution’s evidence against him, which he said he has not been able to review.

“Do you have any law degree?” Dennis asked Mitchell. “What benefit would it be for you to analyze anything?”

Mitchell answered: “They ain’t never get no drugs from me.”

Because Mitchell rejected the plea offer, the case will be placed on the docket for trial. There’s no indication yet when it may go before a jury.

Deangelo Mitchell and his brother were arrested on the night of Nov. 30, 2011 on cocaine trafficking charges. On a video made of the two brothers handcuffed sitting in the back seat of a North Charleston police cruiser, they can be seen and heard discussing their arrests.

Although both suspects are cuffed behind their backs, the video appears to show Deangelo Mitchell contorting to pull something from the rear portion of his clothes. He passes it to his brother, who manages to get his hands by his sides and the object to his mouth. Wayne Mitchell then appears to be chewing something.

Wayne Mitchell suffered a seizure after ingesting the cocaine in order to destroy evidence, according to authorities. He died less than an hour later.

After his arrest, Mitchell had been out on bail but was rearrested on July 26, 2012 for violating the conditions of his bail.

Read more in upcoming editions of The Post and Courier.


Reach Natalie Caula at 937-5594 or Twitter.com/ncaula.

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