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herald update........suspect linked to earlier break-in


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Taylor suspect linked to earlier break-in

Posted on Thu, Dec. 06, 2007

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By Miami Herald Staff Report


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Authorities believe Jason Mitchell, one of four men charged in Sean Taylor's murder, broke into Taylor's home a month before the killing.

One of four men arrested in connection with last week's slaying of Washington Redskins star Sean Taylor was involved in an earlier break-in at the football player's home, say law enforcement sources familiar with the case.

The sources say investigators have tied Jason Mitchell, 19, to the scene of the Nov. 18 break-in. At that time, Taylor's home was unoccupied.

The intruders ransacked the home, Taylor's family reported nothing missing. Investigators discovered a damaged air vent and a knife on a bed in one of the rooms.

The Nov. 18 burglary was reported by Sasha Johnson, Taylor's sister, who frequently stays at the home.

Mitchell had been in the home in October when he attended a birthday party for Sasha Johnson.

Taylor, a former star at the University of Miami, was shot on the morning. of Nov. 26 during an attempted burglary at his Palmetto Bay home. He died the next day at Jackson Memorial Hospital from the leg wound, which severed his femoral artery.

Days later, authorities arrested four suspects -- including three teenagers -- in Fort Myers and charged them with the slaying of Taylor.

Along with Mitchell, police arrested Eric Rivera Jr., 17, Charles Wardlow, 18, and Venjah Hunte, 20. Each has been indicted on charges of first-degree murder and armed burglarly.

All four suspects were denied bond and remain behind bars in Miami.

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