President Nixon's former law partner served as his attorney general before resigning in 1972 to head the Committee for the Re-election of the President. In September 1972, stories by The Washington Post linked Mitchell to a secret campaign fund that paid for the Watergate burglary. When Post reporter Carl Bemstein called for a comment, Mitchell directed his response at the Post's publisher, saying "Katie Graham's gonna get her tit caught in a big fat wringer if that's ever published." According to later testimony, Mitchell approved $250,000 for the break-in.
Mitchell was later charged with conspiracy, perjury and obstruction of justice. He was convicted in 1974, the first time in U.S. history that an attorney general had been convicted of criminal activities. Mitchell served 19 months in a minimum-security prison in Alabama before being released on parole for medical reasons. Mitchell's outspoken wife, Martha, whose allegations of White House involvement in the scandal had been attributed to alcoholism and mental illness, died in 1976.
After his release from prison, Mitchell lived in Georgetown with longtime companion Mary Gore Dean -- part owner of the exclusive Jockey Club. He died at age 75 on Nov. 9, 1988. Nixon led the funeral procession for his most loyal supporter. A decorated Navy veteran, Mitchell was buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
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