Man arrested after Prince William manhunt

Earl P. Mitchell was arrested in connection with a Pennsylvania homicide. Mitchell fled police which spurred a seven hour manhunt. (Prince William County Police Department)

This story has been updated from a previous version.

WASHINGTON – The Prince William County police on Thursday arrested a man who was wanted in a Pennsylvania homicide, but not before a manhunt that lasted about seven hours and resulted in the locking down of two area schools.

The Prince William County police report that Earl P. Mitchell fled Manassas City officers on foot in Prince William County after losing control of the vehicle he was driving during a car chase. The Prince William County Police and Manassas City Police activated a Unified Command Post which initiated an extensive manhunt for Mitchell involving search dogs and aerial support from U.S. Customs Border Protection.

At one point, Osbourn Park High School was locked down, while Bennett Elementary School was on secure building status. All area schools were notified of the incident and took the necessary precautions.

Shortly after 8:00 p.m. on February 6, officers received information that Mitchell was possibly in the basement area of a home on Mineral Springs Dr.

Two residents of the home found the armed suspect and reportedly calmed him down for a few hours before managing to flee the house, when the residents were able to notify the authorities of the suspect’s presence.

Police found Mitchell in the residence and apprehended him without any injuries of either party.


Manassas City police released this image of Earl P. Mitchell who escaped officers in the area of Prince William County Parkway and Tattersall Drive. He is believed to be armed and dangerous. (Manassas City Police Department)

Earlier the same day, Thursday, seven schools in Alexandria were locked down after two women were shot in a home nearby.

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