06-21-2018 Police Reports

Police Reports By Annette Christie Perez pleads no contest to murder charges The killer of his children’s mother and their grandfather, Alex Perez, 26, agreed to a plea deal; a deal that will give him a 40-60 year prison sentence. Perez pleaded no contest but mentally ill to two counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of Renee Mitchell and her father John Mitchell. Renee Mitchell was the mother of two children with Perez. Berrien County Trial Court Judge Scott Schofield accepted the plea from Perez, who will be sentenced on July 16. The murder occurred on January 14, 2016 in the Hagar Township home that the younger Mitchell shared with her father and her children. The two children were taken by Perez, as was Renee Mitchell’s car. A nationwide Amber Alert went out to find the two girls. The next morning the car, the two girls, and Perez were located in Colorado together. He was ultimately extradited back to Michigan and faced two first degree (premeditated) murder charges. The court process has been delayed several times beginning with Perez fighting his extradition to Michigan. He was ruled incompetent, finally got a bed at a state forensic center for evaluation and treatment for months only to delay it again when the question of criminal responsibility was raised. The trial was to have begun July 3. It was reported that Berrien County Prosecutor Mike Sepic said that the plea negotiated between his office and the defense team was the safest bet. Sepic told The Herald-Palladium that Perez was planning to use an insanity defense and if that worked, he would be found not guilty. With the no contest but mentally ill plea and the 40-60 year sentencing agreement, Perez will serve a minimum of 40 years in prison. He will receive monitoring and treatment as deemed necessary in the prison system. Coloma Township Police activity The Coloma Township Police Department investigated a total of 273 complaints in the month of May. Chief Jason Roe said those numbers are close to the number investigated last year. The department made 19 arrests, all of which were misdemeanors. Of the complaints investigated there were 12 family/civil incidents, 18 suspicious situations, 11 public peace, 48 ordinance violations, 50 non-criminal assists, and 36 assists to other agencies. The department made 158 traffic stops and wrote 19 citations. Of the accidents investigated there were six property damage accidents, two private property accidents, one hit and run, and two injury accidents.


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