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Inmate charged for biting off piece of man’s ear during fight at Utah State Prison

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Posted at 3:01 PM, Mar 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-30 17:04:36-04

DRAPER, Utah – An inmate at the Utah State Prison has been charged with mayhem and assault by a prisoner after he allegedly bit off a piece of another inmate’s ear during a fight.

According to a statement of probable cause, 35-year-old Donald Rollins Mitchell faces one count of mayhem as a second-degree felony and one count of assault by a prisoner as a third-degree felony. The charges were filed Tuesday.

An officer responding to an inmate’s request for assistance on February 24 noticed, “a part of [Victim’s] ear was missing.” The inmate initially claimed he fell, but authorities did a “knuckle torso check” to see if any inmates nearby had injuries, and they found Mitchell with wounds to his face and body suggesting he’d been in a fight.

Mitchell ultimately admitted to getting into a fight with the victim, saying he didn’t like the victim or the fact he was talking to Mitchell’s cell mate. The fight began in one cell, briefly stopped, and then resumed when Mitchell followed the victim to another cell nearby and continued to antagonize him.  The victim stated Mitchell had a blade and that he had to defend himself.

Mitchell initially denied biting the man’s ear, but, about a month later, authorities again interviewed Mitchell and this time he admitted to causing the wound. He stated that as they were fighting, the pair wound up on the ground, and when he saw the victim’s head and ear near his mouth he bit down on the ear.