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$1 Million Bond In Wife’s Murder

August 13, 2013
By DAVE GOSSETT For The Intelligencer , The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

STEUBENVILLE - After hearing from Prosecutor Jane Hanlin Monday that Michael Mitchell is a "flight risk," Jefferson County Judge Joe Corabi wasted no time in setting a $1 million bond for the accused murderer.

Corabi on Monday arraigned Mitchell, 38, of Irondale, who has been charged with the murder of his 38-year old girlfriend, Maria Cantwell, at the home they shared at 998 Jefferson Road 50 in Irondale. Mitchell is currently lodged in the Jefferson County jail.

He is next scheduled to appear before Corabi on Thursday for a preliminary hearing.

Corabi also appointed attorney Steven Lamatrice to represent Mitchell, as Mitchell said he did not own any property and had no income.

"I worked last October. The only thing I own is my truck, which is probably worth $2,500 to $3,000," Mitchell told Corabi.

Jefferson County Prosecutor Jane Hanlin asked for the $1 million bond.

"He faces the possibility of life in prison and has already shown he is a flight risk when he was apprehended in Beloit, Ohio, following the shooting of his girlfriend last week," Hanlin stated.

Cantwell's three children were in the home and her 13-year-old daughter was sleeping in bed with her mother when the shooting occurred, Jefferson County Sheriff Fred Abdalla said.

Mitchell left the home around 10:40 a.m. Thursday, telling Cantwell's daughter he would return in about 30 minutes, according to police reports.

Abdalla said Mitchell had put all his clothing, as well as numerous firearms and more than 8,000 rounds of ammunition, in his utility truck prior to leaving the Irondale home.

Law enforcement officials continue to search for the small-caliber handgun they believe Mitchell used to shoot Cantwell in the head early Thursday.

Abdalla said Mitchell told him the shooting was an accident.

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