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Former Sesser mayor charged with meth possession

By Travis DeNeal
updated: 1/18/2019 9:59 AM

SESSER -- Sesser police arrested former Sesser mayor Ned Mitchell Tuesday on a charge of possession of methamphetamine, according to a Sesser Police Department news release.

According to the release Mitchell, 70, was arrested shortly after 2 p.m. Tuesday at his home after Sesser police executed a search warrant.

A Franklin County Jail inmate report shows Mitchell was brought in on a charge of possession of less than 5 grams of meth. The police report states that both meth and "items consistent with the use of methamphetamine" were discovered by police in the home.

Mitchell was first elected Sesser mayor in 1979. In 1999, he was appointed to fill the 59th District state senate seat vacated by Democrat Jim Rea. Mitchell ran for the senate seat in the 2000 Democratic primary and was defeated by Larry Woolard.

He continued to run for and win the mayoral seat in Sesser until he was defeated in 2013 by current Mayor Jason Ashmore.

On Tuesday, Sesser police also arrested Elaina June Kays, 42, of Sesser at Mitchell's home. She also was charged with possession of less than 5 grams of meth, according to the Franklin County Jail inmate report.

Mitchell posted $1,500 bond and Keys posted $2,000. Both were released Wednesday.

All parties are considered innocent until proven guilty.

On Thursday, Mitchell addressed the incident in a statement on Facebook.

The statement reads, "Don't even know where to start this so I'll just say thanks for those who support each other in difficult times, being in jail in solitary is a humbling experience but I resigned myself to deal with it and I will on a daily basis. The jail staff treated me with respect and professionalism although the food was kind of eatable but adequate so I'm just leaving that comment there.

"Not having access to a cell phone or FB or email was difficult for about 30 minutes haha although I missed thanking Democrats for things they need to be thanked for. As for my situation I've always held on to the premise that we are all innocent until proven guilty, it's a fundamental right in America.

"This will work it's way through the court system as it should and I feel confident that I will be exonerated. Of course there is some damage done as far as reputation that will be difficult to repair, maybe even impossible in some folks eyes. That being said I appreciate the many calls and messages of support, you all are true friends. On the other side there are those who rejoice and I get that too, we all have those people in our lives to keep us entertained and making us prove them wrong.

"I've rambled enough on this topic, I solicit your prayers for The Princess first and me last. A friend last nite told me this too shall pass, it will! I'll be back to normal on FB real soon."