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Thurmont man arrested & charged with four counts of attempted first-degree murder

Chris Patterson

A Thurmont man was arrested and charged with four counts of attempted first-degree murder Tuesday, following a shooting Sunday at Sheetz on Md. Route 550 in Thurmont.

Town Mayor Martin Burns commended the Thurmont Police Department, and particularly investigating officer Sgt. Shawn Tyler, for their work on the case.

Dale N. Mitchell Jr., 21, is accused of firing six shots at four people in the parking lot of the convenience store at about 10 p.m. Sunday.

Just after midnight Tuesday, a Frederick County Sheriff's deputy in Middletown arrested Mitchell during a traffic stop.

Tyler said no one was injured in the shooting incident; a bullet hit a Sheetz employee's car. As of Wednesday, the gun had not yet been recovered.

Tyler said during his investigation he learned the victims knew Mitchell and identified him as the shooter. The four victims include three men and one woman, and are a mixture of adults and juveniles, he said.

Tyler said it was the "really good police work" of sheriff's Deputy Greg Williams that made the quick arrest possible.

Williams stopped a car in Middletown for a burned-out taillight and then obtained the identification on the people in the car. He ran Mitchell's name through the police system, which is not regular practice in such a situation, and learned Mitchell was wanted.

Tyler said Williams told him he "just felt something wasn't right," and that's why he checked out Mitchell.

The driver of the car at the shooting is being questioned, but no action has yet been taken against that driver, Tyler said.

Mitchell is being held at the Frederick County Detention Center without bond.

In addition to the attempted first-degree murder charges, Mitchell has also been charged with four counts each of first-degree assault, reckless endangerment, and reckless endangerment from a car.

He is also charged with possession of a handgun in a vehicle, handgun on person, and use of a handgun in the commission of felony crime of violence.

Tyler said the reckless endangerment charges are related to firing a handgun.

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