Family hoping for more charges in 1988 shaken baby case

The Marion County Coroner’s Office completed its autopsy and deemed Patrick Mitchell’s death a homicide caused by a traumatic brain injury.

INDIANAPOLIS — The Marion County Prosecutor’s office says the decision to bring additional charges in a delayed death case is still under review. The issue first received public attention when a 34-year-old man died in February from injuries he received as a 2-month-old baby.

13 Investigates learned this week the Marion County Coroner’s Office completed its autopsy of Patrick Mitchell. His cause of death was “complications of craniocerebral trauma,” which is a traumatic brain injury. The manner of death was deemed homicide.

Patrick Mitchell’s uncle Jim told 13 Investigates via text message he believed that should help prosecutors file a murder charge against John Coleman, the man who pleaded guilty to battery decades ago. Court documents say Coleman admitted to shaking 2-month-old Patrick. He served about two years in prison.

RELATED: Indianapolis man injured as infant 34 years ago dies, coroner rules death a homicide

RELATED: 34 years of suffering: Indianapolis family of shaken baby wants additional charges

“I just hope they do the right thing, and these prosecutors don’t tuck tail and just let him go,” Jim Mitchell said in March. “Because this is a totally separate crime. You know, assault and battery on a baby is one thing. But if the baby dies because of the injuries, you suffer should be a totally separate charge.”

A law professor at Indiana University’s McKinney School of Law said additional charges are possible because it’s a delayed death case. However, Novella Nedeff told 13News, trying a 1988 case in 2022 brings a lot of challenges, saying it may be difficult to find witnesses and evidence to have a successful trial.

Family hoping for more charges in 1988 shaken baby case

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll to top