A state appeals court has ordered a new hearing on a Yakima man’s request for a conditional release from Eastern State Hospital.
A three-judge panel of the Washington State Court of Appeals on Thursday ordered the Yakima County Superior Court to hold a new hearing on Phillip Arnold Paul’s request to be released for vocational training in Spokane.
Paul, 30, in July 1987 was acquitted of first-degree murder by reason of insanity and sent to Eastern State’s section for the criminally insane. He had been accused of killing an elderly neighbor in April 1987.
The Yakima court rejected his request to be released for training in September 1988.
The appeals court ruled that the lower court erred in rejecting the request because it failed to apply the standards of evidence used in assessing petitions for final discharge.
Paul’s application had been approved by the hospital’s superintendent.
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