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Accused pastor is released on personal recognizance

STEUBENVILLE — Everett Mitchell, the clergyman indicted on six felony sex offenses involving a minor, was released on his own recognizance Tuesday.

Mitchell pleaded not guilty to two felony counts of sexual battery, two felony counts of attempted sexual battery, one felony count of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor and one felony count of attempted unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. He also was charged with sexual imposition, a misdemeanor.

The alleged offenses spanned 2006 through 2010, Prosecutor Jane Hanlin had said earlier this week. No further details are being released.

Mitchell, the pastor at Tower of Power Ministries on Maryland Avenue, also was ordered to have no contact with the alleged victim.

That same day, bond was continued at $250,000 for Paul F. Hall, 58, of 382 McLister Ave., Mingo Junction, who is facing two felony counts of first degree rape and one felony count of gross sexual imposition involving a juvenile.

The disparity between the cases wasn’t lost on Hanlin, who said there was no preferential treatment for the pastor. She said Mitchell wasn’t required to post bond because he “appeared voluntarily the first time, the way you’re supposed to.”

“If you appear, as he did, when you are supposed to, then the court will assume you will make (future) court appearances,” Hanlin said Thursday. “It was never a ‘special treatment’ kind of thing. He was never in custody.”

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