Four-year-old Mitchell was last seen on February 3, 1983 in Menlo Park, California. An unidentified male broke into the Owens' apartment through a window and assaulted Mitchell's mother, Ora Owens.
Mitchell's two brothers slept through the attack, but Mitchell woke up and walked into the room where Ora was being assaulted. Ora screamed at Mitchell to run away, but the assailant attempted to strangle her with a telephone cord which caused her to pass out and lose consciousness. Neighbors found Ora the next day and she was taken to the hospital where she regained consciousness and spent weeks recovering from her ordeal.
Ora told authorities that she may have caught a glimpse of Mitchell's abductor and her assailant. She believes that she met the assailant the previous night at the Enlisted Men's Club at the Moffett Field Naval Air Station in Mountain View, California. The man offered Ora a drink which she declined and she left. She thinks the man followed her home and drove away when she reached her door. The man hasn't been identified, but he is described as an approximately 25-year-old male who's 6'0 tall with brown hair, blue eyes, a moustache and tattoos.
Another suspect is a man dressed in a police officer's uniform arrived at the apartment a few hours before the break-in, asking about a report Ora made about a stolen purse a month before, but the police have no record of an officer arriving to the Owens' residence on that day.
Ora received phone calls from an unknown male who threatened to take away her other two sons, but it's not know if the calls are related to Mitchell's abduction. Authorities hoped to use current forensic technology which wasn't available in Mitchell's abduction and Ora's assault in 1983.
Ora has criticized the police for not looking hard enough for her son because the family is poor and African-American. Inexplictibly, the police listed Mitchell as a runaway juvenile and refused to look for him. As of 2020, her attacker has never been found and Mitchell has never been seen again.
Mitchell is described as an African-American male who is 3'0 and 40 pounds; he has black hair & brown eyes. He has a scar on the upper portion of his nose, a surgical scar on his left rib area and a lazy right eyelid.