Arkansas 911 News

Allegedly: Fatal Crash..Driver Avoids Police; Felony Arrest – HOT SPRINGS

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Posted by Arkansas 911 News Chief Editor Paul Maddox

Originally posted on May 30, 2020 at 11:45PM for VIP Members at the AR911NEWS VIP Facebook Group.  To get your VIP Pass, please CLICK HERE.

All suspects are presumed innocent until determined guilty in court.

Hot Springs Police Detective De Foor reports that his department investigated the death of a child on Silver Street on April 9, 2020 around 8PM.  A car had struck the child in a yard and that car departed the scene.  The child had been taken to the hospital.

About an hour later, Let. De Foor and Sgt. Hall were standing in the parking lot at the hospital when the suspect (father of the deceased child) drove within 5 feet of the officers, did not stop and then departed the area without speaking to officers.

Juwan Diego Mitchell, 29, of Illinois Street in Hot Springs – allegedly refusing to cooperate with police following the accidental death of his daughter.

Shortly after that, the suspect, Juwan Diego Mitchell, 29, of Illinois Street in Hot Springs, was calling the hospital asking about the child, but would hang the phone up.  A few minutes later, Mr. Mitchell called back and officers were at the phone.  He initially said that he had the wrong number, but then admitted that he was the father of the child.  He was told that police needed to speak with him face to face.  He claimed that he didn’t have a vehicle and was waiting on a ride.  The officer said that he just saw him drive through the hospital parking lot.  Mr. Mitchell said that wasn’t him.  Mr. Mitchell was told that his daughter didn’t make it, the death appeared to be accidental in nature and that he was required to make himself available to law enforcement.  He refused to return to the scene or provide any information.

A warrant for his arrest was obtained and entered into the police computer.

Video from a nearby surveillance camera was obtained the next day.  The video clearly showed what happened.  That day, police went to Mr. Mitchell’s residence to speak with him about this.  He agreed to come to the police department and give a statement.  After being read his rights, Mr. Mitchell admitted it was him that drove through the hospital parking lot that night and saw the police officers.  He said that he drove through there after being told that the child had been run over.  He was asked why he refused to make himself available.  He said that he doesn’t talk to cops.  He was asked why he didn’t come back and talk after he called that night and spoke briefly with officers on the hospital phone.  He said that he didn’t feel like talking to anybody.

HSPD Officer First Class Z. Brown was on patrol in the area of Spring Street on May, 27 when he had occasion to bump into Mr. Mitchell.  OFC Brown located the arrest warrant and arrested him on the outstanding charge.

Mr. Mitchell is charged with a Felony charge relating to failure to meet requirements following a fatal traffic crash (AR §27-53-101) with a bond of $3,500.