Mississippi sheriff arrested on trafficking, witness retaliation, other felony charges

Timothy Mitchell

WEBSTER COUNTY, Miss. — State authorities have arrested a Mississippi sheriff on multiple felony charges.

Webster County Sheriff Timothy Mitchell was charged with embezzlement, two counts of trafficking stolen firearms, attempting sex with an inmate, tampering with physical evidence, retaliation against a witness, permitting possession or sale of a controlled substance in jail, and two counts of furnishing an inmate with weapons, cellphones and narcotics.

If convicted he faces anywhere from nine to 152 years and up to $102,000 in fines.

Mitchell was serving his second term as sheriff when he was booked into the Lafayette County Jail.

Earlier this month, WTVA reported the 53-year-old had announced his retirement effective in early January. At the time he cited health reasons as the main motivator.

Mitchell’s chief deputy resigned several weeks ago, said Pat Cummings, president of the Webster County Board of Supervisors.

Mitchell is the second Mississippi sheriff arrested this year.

William Brewer resigned as sheriff in northern Mississippi’s Tallahatchie County in August, days after he was arrested on federal charges related to narcotics trafficking and extortion. A federal indictment said Brewer took $6,500 in cash “to allow drug distribution in Tallahatchie County.” He pleaded guilty Nov. 1 to one count of attempting to extort a bribe and is set for sentencing in February.

Federal authorities said Brewer gave protection for years to a drug dealer who robbed other dealers and kicked back stolen money and drug profits to Brewer. They said the illegal partnership began in about 2003.

Webster County is northwest of Starkville.