This week’s Fear Thy Neighbor will examine the 2010 shooting death of 53-year-old Robert Mitchell Sr., a Brandywine, Maryland, man who was shot by his neighbor. Authorities say Ronald Ragland and the Mitchell family had an ongoing dispute, which ended in bloodshed. Mitchell Sr.’s son, Robert Mitchell Jr., 18, was injured in the attack but survived. Police officials say this family feud escalated over the years with tensions finally boiling over seven years ago, after Ronald Ragland, 54, had become so fed up with the noise in his neighborhood that he decided to take matters into his own hands. Currently, Ronald Ragland is serving time at the Jessup Correctional Institution in Maryland. Fear Thy Neighbor‘s episode title this week is “Hysteria Lane.”
The day that Ronald Ragland moved to Charm Court in Prince George’s County in 1996, he thought he would be there for life. Instead, he is spending a portion of his life at a Maryland correctional facility for gunning down two neighbors, Washington NBC-4 reported.
By many accounts, Ronald Ragland was an irate older man who didn’t like it when the neighborhood kids walked on his grass or made too much noise with their bouncing balls in front of his yard. According to him, the situation became unbearable after Robert Mitchell Sr., moved in with his twin boys in 2006. As they grew older, Ragland believed that the Mitchell boys had become troublesome. Neighbors had also started talking about a break-in that occurred in the area. And by the time Ronald Mitchell Jr., was a young adult, a surge in traffic around the Mitchell’s home made Ragland dislike his neighbors even more.
At times, the cars would park in front of Ronald Ragland’s home, something that irritated him to no end and convinced him that there was drug activity going on there. He finally placed a call to the cops, which ended in the arrest of Robert Mitchell Jr.
Police say that after Mitchell Jr.’s arrest, the bickering escalated between the neighbors. Often times, they would throw up the middle finger to each other as they were coming and going. At other times, Ronald Ragland would stare the Mitchell sons down as they arrived home. Neighbors remembered hearing Ronald Ragland yelling and spewing profanity-laced words at Robert Mitchell Jr.
Ragland also hated the fact that the kids would use the driveway of a nearby vacant house as a place to skateboard. On May 2, 2010, tensions spilled over, which led to a shocking result. Court records detail the events this way.
“Ragland pulled a gun from behind his back and, from the middle of the street, started shooting at Mitchell-Junior. Mitchell-Junior started to backpedal. Ragland moved from his spot in front of the curb onto the Mitchells’ property and fired a third shot that hit Mitchell-Junior in his right hip. As Mitchell-Junior was moving away from Ragland, Mitchell-Junior fell onto the ground. Ragland returned to Mitchell-Junior, who had tried to move toward the side of the house. Mitchell-Junior yelled: “Please don’t shoot me anymore. Please don’t shoot me anymore.” Mitchell-Junior tried to get up, but Ragland kicked him down.”
Robert Mitchell Jr. was finally able to get away. His father, Robert Sr., wasn’t so lucky. Here is how it ended.
“Ragland then ran over to the white Ford Taurus and fired two shots into the open driver’s side window as Mitchell-Senior was attempting to take off his seat belt. Detectives found Mitchell-Senior slumped in the driver’s seat of the white Taurus with his head resting on the door and his hands at his side. He had a gun shot wound to the back of his left temple. Officer Wyatt observed blood and brain matter. He also saw a gun on the floor of the car between Mitchell-Senior’s legs.”
The medical examiner told the family that Robert Mitchell Sr., had received two gunshot wounds to the head. Robert Mitchell Jr. finally recovered from his injuries and was able to tell police what happened that terrible day.
An aerial view of the homes, where the tragedy occurred can be seen here. The killer, Ronald Ragland, lived at 8801 Charm Court. His victim lived across the street at 8800 Charm Court in Brandywine. Watch Fear Thy Neighbor this Thursday, April 20, at 10/9 p.m. Central on Investigation Discovery (ID) to find out how much time the courts gave Ronald Ragland to serve.
[Featured Image by Fear Thy Neighbor/Facebook]