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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Man accused of unprovoked downtown beating, Eastern State Hospital killing is re-arrested

Vladimir V. Pavlik was treated Eastern State Hospital where a doctor diagnosed him with “passive-aggressive personality features” and in 2018 determined Pavlik did not suffer from psychosis.  (COLIN MULVANY/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW)

A five-time convicted felon faces charges of second-degree murder for a killing at Eastern State Hospital in 2022 and first-degree assault for an unprovoked downtown Spokane attack that happened in 2021.

Police arrested 26-year-old Martay L. Ellis last week at Western State Hospital in Pierce County, where he is currently committed for mental health issues. The previous charges were dismissed because Ellis was found incompetent to stand trial, but re-filed when he was transferred to a less restrictive area of the hospital.

In September 2021, Ellis was walking downtown near Second Avenue and Jefferson Street when a woman drove up in her car beside him, court records say. Street cameras show Ellis made some type of gesture to her, so she got out of her car to speak to him.

When he approached her, he threw a punch and tackled her to the ground, court records said. The two struggled in the street as Ellis repeatedly punched the woman in the head until she stopped moving. Ellis stood up and stomped on her head multiple times, court records said, then ran westbound on Second Avenue.

Police matched Ellis’ description to the surveillance video of the beating, and he was arrested.

The victim was taken to Sacred Heart Medical Center, where she was intubated due to “significant head trauma.” She has since been released.

Ellis was civilly committed at Eastern State Hospital after the attack. While there, he was charged with the murder of his roommate, Daniel Zellmer. According to court documents, Ellis punched, kicked and heel-stomped Zellmer multiple times in a common area of their ward, killing him.

His arraignment is April 2.