Arrest warrant issued when man skips hearing

William J. Mitchell, one of three men accused of stealing from three businesses in the Harmar Community Center, failed to show up to two court appointments this week, prompting a warrant for his arrest.

Mitchell, 29, of 516 Smith St., was indicted in August for the June 27 burglary where he, 19-year-old Eric G. Sciance, and 26-year-old Christopher A. Lent entered the building and stole items from The Gospel Mission Food Pantry, The Boys and Girls Club, and North American Recycling Inc.

Some of the more than $4,000 worth of food stolen from the pantry was located at Lent’s apartment the next day but could not be returned because it had been opened.

Mitchell was the only one of the three yet to plead guilty or be sentenced on any charges in relation to the break-in.

Lent pleaded guilty to a fifth-degree felony count of complicity to breaking and entering and was sentenced in October to 150 days in jail. Sciance pleaded guilty to a fifth-degree felony count of breaking and entering and was sentenced Jan. 21 to four months in jail.

Mitchell had indicated that he would enter a change of plea Tuesday, but never showed up, said Washington County Prosecutor Jim Schneider.

“He wasn’t required to be there for that. However, he was required to be at trial on Wednesday, and he didn’t show up,” said Schneider.

By skipping the trial, Mitchell violated both a recognizance bond and a $2,500 commercial bond.

He also faces an additional charge-a fourth-degree felony count of breach or recognizance.