The real question in the Phillip Paul case is whether the Yakima judge will order a hearing to determine whether anyone should be held in contempt. It appears a determination was made Sept. 4 Paul was still a danger, but the unit manager says he does not know when people in his unit go to court.
Why not? Don’t staff tell him when a dangerous person in his charge is taken to court and what the judge decided? What occurs thereafter is up to the judge, not the medical staff. Why then would a “field trip” be authorized without the court’s permission?
The last time Paul escaped custody, apparently we taxpayers paid $100,000 for the sheriff’s officer who had his shoulder injured apprehending him instead of the people responsible for his escape paying. Nothing has been said about that time. However, I am relatively certain no one lost their job or was reassigned.
State authorities wringing their hands will not suffice. Individual responsibility must be imposed on the persons who mishandled this debacle or we have gained nothing. A dangerous individual is especially dangerous if after each crime they can be found not guilty by reason of insanity.
Former Spokane County prosecuting attorney