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Man featured on 'America's Most Wanted' arrested in Tampa

TAMPA — A man featured on America's Most Wanted was arrested on a murder warrant Sunday after being pulled over on a drunken-driving stop.

Michael Anthony Mitchell, 40, was wanted in a 2003 murder in Cincinnati, but deputies didn't know that until he was fingerprinted at the jail. He was using a fake name, deputies said.

About 3:45 a.m. Sunday, Deputy Felix Moret saw a 2002 Lexus weaving across N Dale Mabry Highway, nearly hitting other vehicles. Moret turned on his lights and siren and pulled the car over at Waters Avenue.

As Moret approached the vehicle, he smelled alcohol. Mitchell failed a field sobriety test, the Sheriff's Office reported.

As Moret handcuffed Mitchell with the assistance of another deputy, Mitchell began to struggle. He struck Moret in the chest and caused Moret to injure his leg, according to deputies.

Mitchell started to run west; Sgt. Ken Escobio ran after him and used a Taser to stop him, the Sheriff's Office said.

Mitchell was taken to the Orient Road Jail on charges of driving under the influence, battery on a law enforcement officer and obstructing or opposing an officer with violence.

While being booked, jail workers received a hit on his fingerprints and realized Mitchell was wanted in connection with an aggravated murder in Cincinnati.

Mitchell had been featured on America's Most Wanted twice in 2006, according to the show's website.

He is suspected of getting in a fight with some people in a bar parking lot, according to Cincinnati police. After the fight disbanded, America's Most Wanted reported, he is accused of waiting outside the bar for 45 minutes and then shooting one of the men involved, Varion Mines, 23.

At Mitchell's first court appearance Monday, a judge explained that Mitchell could go voluntarily to Ohio or fight extradition. Mitchell will have to decide by next week, when he has his next hearing.

If he chooses to stay in Tampa, the Public Defender's Office here will not represent him or consult on the murder charge. For that, he would need a private attorney, the judge said.

Times staff writer Alexandria Zayas contributed to this report.

Man featured on 'America's Most Wanted' arrested in Tampa 11/15/10 [Last modified: Monday, November 15, 2010 9:43pm]

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