James Mitchell, heir to the Mitchell Bros. empire of adult films and strip joints, was sentenced today to 35 years to life in prison for the 2009 murder of girlfriend Danielle Keller. Mitchell was convicted last month of bludgeoning Keller to death with an aluminium baseball bat at her home in Novato - which Mitchell tried to deny when he took the stand himself in early July. With the sentencing handed down, Mitchell has moved on to blaming his conviction on the "big circus" surrounding the trial due to his family name.
In a Marin County Superior court this morning, Mitchell continued to deny the murder conviction, repeating his story that two men had broken in to Keller's home when he arrived. He went on to blame his family name for thrusting him in to the spotlight, saying he never wanted any part in the porno business and that the sound of his name was like "poison in the water and a flock of sheep running over a cliff". The victim's mother, on the other hand, called Mitchell "a man-child" with "a skewed sense of entitlement."
As for that family name, it does carry more than just the smutty connotations. You'll remember Mitchell's father Jim shot and killed his brother Artie (the other half of "Mitchell Brothers") during an argument back in 1991.
The younger Mitchell's sentences breaks down to: 26 years to life in prison on the first-degree murder charge and 9 years for kidnapping the one-year-old daughter he had with Keller.