A bail review hearing was postponed Tuesday for the woman identified as the driver of a white van that rammed a Howard County police vehicle before her passenger was fatally shot by police in Mount Airy.
“I have been advised by the detention center that she is being difficult and the only way that we would be able to get her to appear ... would be to physically force her to do so, which I am reluctant to do,” Frederick County District Judge Dino Flores Jr. said at a bail review hearing Tuesday for Shyann Brandi-Dawn Outen. Outen, 28, of Woodbine, also refused representation by a public defender when contacted by that office Tuesday morning, said Stephanie Pankiewicz, an assistant public defender.
Cody Ethan Mitchell, 26, of Damascus, was killed Monday when two Howard County police officers opened fire on the van at about noon Monday on Penn Shop Road near Md. 27, according to a news release from the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office. Mitchell’s body was scheduled for an autopsy at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore as of Tuesday, the release states.
As of Tuesday, Outen was being charged only with first-degree burglary and theft from $1,000 to $10,000 in connection with Monday’s investigation, according to online court records.
Police said the van rammed an undercover Howard County police vehicle, then drove toward three Howard County officers as they stood outside their vehicles when members of a repeat offenders unit tried to pull the van over. The traffic stop was initiated after the officers said they witnessed a home burglary in the 13200 block of Manor Drive South, according to charging documents filed against Outen late Monday.
Two of the three officers facing the van, Cpl. Thomas Townsend and Officer 1st Class Darshan Luckey, opened fire, striking and killing Mitchell, according to a news release issued Tuesday afternoon by the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office.
Neither Townsend, a 16-year veteran, nor Luckey, who has been with Howard County police for 10 years, was injured in the confrontation, the release states.
It was still not clear Tuesday how many times Mitchell was shot or how many rounds were fired. Maj. Tim Clarke, a spokesman for the sheriff’s office, declined to comment on specific details.
Clarke did confirm that Outen was driving the van when the shooting occurred, a fact also outlined in charging documents filed against Outen in Frederick County District Court.
The narrative in Outen’s charging documents skips over the shooting, but both Outen and Mitchell were identified as “known burglary suspects” in the documents, which begin with Howard County officers tailing the white Chevrolet van at about 11:50 a.m. Monday as it approached the house on Manor Drive South.
Outen and Mitchell were seen removing items from the home, including two large flat-screen televisions, before the officers watched Outen drive away, the documents state. The officers then contacted Frederick County sheriff’s deputies to request permission to stop the vehicle, according to previous reports.
A walk-through of the house on Manor Drive South later revealed that a rear door of the home was forced open and approximately $5,985 in property was missing, including the two TVs, a video game console, three watches, a laptop and a case of jewelry, according to the documents.
Detectives were still waiting for a warrant to search the van for stolen property when Outen’s charging documents were filed late Monday, but Outen admitted participating in a burglary at the Manor Drive South residence when questioned by sheriff’s deputies after the shooting, according to the documents.
The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office took custody of Outen and was handling the investigation of the shooting because it and Outen’s arrest took place on the Frederick County side of Mount Airy.
Howard County police will conduct an internal review of the shooting, according to a release from that department.
The officers involved in the shooting were on administrative leave pending the outcome of investigations into the shooting, as is department protocol, according to previous reports.
No body camera or dashboard-mounted camera footage of the shooting was available, according to Clarke.
Outen, who changed her name in 2015, was also facing charges by Howard County police under her former name, Brandi Dawn Sexton, Hoffman said. Under that name, Outen was facing two counts each of first-, third- and fourth-degree burglary, theft from $1,000 to $10,000 and malicious destruction of property less than $1,000, as well as two counts each of conspiracy to commit the offenses, according to court records.
The offenses in Outen’s case in Howard County date back to two burglaries, both in the Woodbine area, that were under investigation by Howard County police, Hoffman said, citing his department’s records.
The first incident occurred between June 24 and June 30 when burglars forced open the door of a residence in the 3100 block of Cabin Run Road and stole a television. The second incident took place between 7:45 a.m. and 7:31 p.m. on June 27 in the 3200 block of Hayloft Court, where the culprits broke in through a rear door window and stole a checkbook, cash, jewelry and a video game console, according to Hoffman’s data.
Clarke confirmed that a District Court warrant was served on Outen shortly after her arrest by sheriff’s deputies on Monday.
“Howard County did obtain warrants for her for other crimes in their jurisdiction, post-incident,” Clarke said. “So those warrants weren’t typed up until after her arrest by our deputies.”
Frederick County Assistant State’s Attorney Amanda Leatherman — who was set to handle Outen’s bail review hearing before it was postponed Tuesday — confirmed that Outen’s second burglary case would likely be handled in Howard County, despite the fact that the case was posted outside a Frederick County courtroom Tuesday afternoon.
Outen’s hearing was rescheduled for Wednesday. In the meantime, she remained held without bail in the Frederick County Adult Detention Center.