Man who fatally beat another man with a frying pan in 2010 found guilty of manslaughter

kward1@herald-leader.comMarch 11, 2014 

Ragland

A man who fatally beat another man to death with a frying pan in December 2010 was found guilty of manslaughter.

A jury convicted Patrick Deon Ragland, 40, of second-degree manslaughter, tampering with physical evidence and being a persistent felony offender in connection with the death of Kerry "Sam" Mitchell, 35.

Mitchell was found dead and lying face down in a closet in his North Limestone apartment on Dec. 28, 2010.

Ragland told police he attacked Mitchell after Mitchell made a sexual advance toward him. Mitchell had been dead for several days when his body was found.

Ragland's first trial last summer was cut short because the courtroom recording equipment malfunctioned. It was discovered that the attorneys' opening statements and the testimony of four witnesses had not been recorded.

Fayette Circuit Judge Ernesto Scorsone said in declaring the mistrial that the recordings were necessary in the event of an appeal.

The jury recommended that Ragland serve 20 years for second-degree manslaughter and 20 years for tampering with physical evidence.

Fayette Commonwealth's Attorney Ray Larson said Tuesday that Scorsone will decide whether the sentence will be served consecutively or concurrently. Sentencing is scheduled for April 24.

Karla Ward: (859) 231-3314. Twitter: @HLpublicsafety.

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