Fear Thy Neighbor Premiered ‘Hysteria Lane’ on Investigation Discovery: Ronald Ragland Harassed, Gaslighted & Executed Army Vet Robert Mitchell (April 20, 2017)

ID Go: A couple who tragically lost their son are thrilled when a family with two boys moves in across the street. But the relationship soon sours, engulfing all of them in conflict, accusation, and finally a deadly shooting. Hysteria Lane, Fear Thy Neighbor (S4, E3)

Date: May 2, 2010
Victims: Robert Mitchell, Sr., 53, Army veteran, disabled and Robert Mitchell, Jr., 18
Offender: Ronald Ragland, 54, Truck Driver
Location: Brandywine, Maryland
Circumstances: Ronald Ragland lost his son to a drunk driving accident, Robert and Donna Mitchell moved in next door with their two sons, Robert Sr. is an Army veteran who served with distinction but was discharged due to an injury, the two families spent a lot of time together initially and regarded each other as good friends, as the Mitchell boys settle in, they make new friends and suddenly the neighborhood is full of kids, more kids means more noise, Ronald slept during the day so he could drive truck at night, Ronald yelled at the Mitchell boys, Robert tried to make Ronald understand they were just kids playing, one day the boys started skateboarding and the noise made Ronald angry again, Ragland grabbed one of the kids by the collar and was throwing him around like a rag doll, Robert Sr. confronted Ronald, Ronald was the type that would not be disrespected and he held a grudge, Robert Sr. told his kids to stay away from Ronald, Ronald wanted things his way in the Charm Court neighborhood, neighbors suspected Ronald may have been jealous of Robert and his two sons, it appeared he was trying to sabotage their life and make them feel his pain, once the boys become Seniors in high school, they had a lot of friends over and listened to music, Ronald would stand in his driveway & make demands of the neighbors, he dictated everything that went on in the neighborhood, Ronald called the police and complained about the neighbors, the Roberts family hadn’t done anything wrong, police asked Robert Sr. to help de-escalate the situation, there was a break-in at a neighbor’s home and someone called to complain that the Roberts kids were the one’s who broke into the home but there was no proof so the police moved on, this didn’t sit well with Ronald, Ronald tried to turn everyone against Robert Sr. and his family, he claimed they were bad for the neighborhood, neighbors admitted to feeling hatred towards the Mitchell family, the situation takes a toll on the Mitchells relationship, one night some unknown kids vandalized Ronald’s house, he didn’t see who did it but he thought he knew who was responsible, he now had a personal vendetta against the Mitchell boys, someone threw a rock through his window as well, Ronald called the cops to complain about the vandalism but the Mitchell boys denied vandalizing Ronald’s property, there was no proof the Mitchell boys committed the crimes, Ronald decided he had to fend for himself, he installed cameras around his property, Ronald sat in front of the different angles of the cameras and watched the neighborhood disintegrate, Ronald tried to gaslight Robert by giving him a hard time about the problems with his wife, Ronald purchased a gun and his hate continued to brew, Robert’s wife left the family and Ronald taunted the boys about their mother leaving them, Ronald was vindictive, one of the Mitchell brothers moved out, Rob Jr. stayed in the house with his dad, Ronald complained about all the cars showing up throughout the night, he suspected drug activity, Ronald called the police and Rob Jr. was arrested for possession of drugs, Rob Jr. smoked marijuana but he denied selling drugs, Rob Jr. told Ronald he wasn’t going anywhere after he returned home from the police department, the case was dropped, Ronald claimed he felt threatened by Rob Jr., Ronald taunted the family once again on May 2, 2010 and Rob Jr. walked towards Ronald gearing up for a fist fight, Ronald started firing his weapon at Rob Jr. in an attempt to execute him and then walked over to Robert Sr. sitting in his car and shot him at close range in his head, Ronald then walked back over to Rob Jr. who was injured but not dead and pointed the gun at him again but he was out of bullets, Ronald returned to his home to reload his gun, the neighbor helped Rob Jr. get into the house out of harm’s way, Ronald returned to the Mitchell home with his gun and taunted Rob Jr. to come back outside, he threatened that he was next, the police arrived just in time and arrested Ronald, Ronald claimed self defense and said Robert Sr. had a gun in his car, the police found a gun in Robert’s car, the neighbor told the police she saw Ronald carry the gun across the street and plant the gun in Robert’s car, the police determined the gun was inoperable and believed Ronald had been planning this for a long time, Ronald purposefully provoked the situation, it was cold blooded murder, Ronald executed Robert Sr. and tried to execute Robert Jr., the Mitchell’s family home went into foreclosure
Disposition: Ronald Ragland was convicted of second degree murder, attempted second degree murder, first degree assault, and use of a handgun in a violent crime in March 2013, Ragland sentenced to 40 years in prison, appealed in 2015

Robert Mitchell

Robert D. Mitchell, Sr. (Photo: Investigation Discovery)

Source: ‘Hysteria Lane’ Fear Thy Neighbor, Investigation Discovery

Editor’s note: With a cable subscription, you can download the free ID Go app and watch all of the Investigation Discovery programming at your convenience. And for those who do not have cable, you can watch “unlocked” episodes on the ID Go app including the latest premieres. Download the ID Go app and binge away. For those who prefer commercial free programming during your binge session, Prime Video has an ID channel: ‘True Crime Files by Investigation Discovery” available for $2.99 a month. It’s a compilation of older seasons but totally worth the cost if you are a true crime addict.

Related Links:
Obituary: Robert D. Mitchell
Victim identified in fatal Capitol Heights shooting Sunday
Police Make Quick Arrest in Homicide on Charm Court
Brandywine man is charged with killing neighbor
Two men convicted of murder in Prince George’s County
Two men convicted for Prince George’s shooting deaths
Ronald Ragland v State of Maryland | Court of Special Appeals (September 24, 2015)
Ragland v State of Maryland | Court of Special Appeals | PDF (September 24, 2015)
Ronald Ragland, Robert Mitchell: Neighbor Feud That Left Dad Dead, Son Injured On ‘Fear Thy Neighbor’ On ID
Hysteria Lane | Fear Thy Neighbor | Investigation Discovery (S4, E3)

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