A high-ranking official in the Jones County Sheriff’s Department was trying to get in a workout on Sunday, but a pushy patron he had a history with forced him to go on duty.
James Mitchell, 44, approached Capt. Vince Williams inside the Laurel gym and started yelling that the longtime local law enforcement official is “a tyrant” and Mitchell accused Williams of violating his civil rights in an earlier encounter while Williams was on duty.
Williams told Mitchell to calm down and stop causing a disturbance in the business, but Mitchell refused and continued to yell at Williams, according to the report. Another patron called Laurel police as Williams attempted to escort Mitchell out of the building, but Mitchell reportedly cursed at the JCSD captain then pushed him.
Williams then “took Mitchell to the ground,” and in doing so, Williams fell on a metal object that caused a contusion to his left-side rib cage, the report continued. When Williams attempted to place Mitchell under arrest, the suspect continued to “resist arrest” while “attempting to strike Williams.” LPD officers and JCSD deputies arrived and took Mitchell into custody.
He was booked into the Jones County Adult Detention Center and charged with felony assault on an officer along with disturbance of a business, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.
He made his initial appearance later that day in Jones County Justice Court and pleaded guilty to the three misdemeanors. Judge Sonny Saul set Mitchell’s bond at $10,000 on the felony, which he later posted and was released.
Williams went to the emergency department at South Central Regional Medical Center, where X-rays showed that he sustained a rib contusion from blunt-force trauma.