Autopsy: Police shot Cary hostage-taker at least 12 times
Posted May 12, 2011
Cary, N.C. — A Cary man who took hostages at a bank three months ago died in a hail of gunfire from police, according to an autopsy report released Thursday.
Devon Mitchell, 19, was shot at least 12 times as he left the Wachovia bank on Green Level Church Road, holding what appeared to be a gun to a woman's head, the autopsy report states. An autopsy found 14 gunshot wounds, including one to the head and several to the chest and arms, but the medical examiner said a couple of the wounds might have been caused by the same bullet.
A toxicology report indicated there was no alcohol in Mitchell's system. There was no information about tests for any drugs in his system.
Mitchell held seven people hostage in the bank for three hours on Feb. 10 as police surrounded the building. He released the hostages one at a time and finally left the bank with a woman. Officers opened fire, believing he had a gun, but they later determined he was unarmed.
Cary Police Chief Pat Bazemore said after the incident that Mitchell had told the hostages and a police hostage negotiator that he had a gun. She said her officers acted correctly based on that information.
Mitchell struggled with mental health issues, according to friends, who described him as an artist, musician and sports fan. He dropped out of Panther Creek High School in 2008 but had recently re-enrolled and worked at a Bojangles'.
Cary spokeswoman Carrie Ronan declined to comment Thursday, saying the autopsy report speaks for itself and noting that the State Bureau of Investigation is still reviewing the incident.
Five law enforcement agents discharged their weapons during the incident. They were identified as Wake County deputy Brad Manville and Cary police officers Sgt. Rick Glancy, 42, Senior Police Officer Ricky Burch, 45, Senior Police Officer Irvin Leggett, 42, and Master Police Officer Chris Redig, 31.
All four Cary officers are assigned to the police field operations bureau.
The case marked the first fatal officer-involved shooting in the history of the Cary Police Department.