Accused murderer admitted to Western State Hospital, could receive nearly $80k from state for the delay

A man awaiting trial for an alleged violent crime spree in Seattle was finally admitted to Western State Hospital after nearly a year in jail. The delay, due to a lack of inpatient beds, will cost taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars.

Forty-year-old Alexander Jay has been in jail since May 9, 2022 for allegedly throwing a Seattle nurse down flights of stairs at a light rail station, kicking her in the face and then beating her. Jay is also accused of beating a man to death at a bus stop before the light rail station attack.

According to court documents, Jay has a criminal record dating back to 2000.

During a competency hearing on April 26, 2022, Jay's attorneys argued that he was not competent to stand trial. A judge ordered that Jay be sent back to the Department of Social & Health Services.

In Washington State, those who are deemed not competent to stand trial must undergo mental health treatment at a facility. However, due to a lack of space, Jay remained in jail.


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In June, Judge Johanna Bender ruled the State Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) must pay Jay $250 dollars a day until he is out of jail and receiving mental health treatment.

He was finally admitted to Western State on March 3, 2023 for competency restoration.

Jay has racked up an estimated $78,000 dollars owed to him while he sat behind bars for 312 days. It appears a judge later ruled that a "protective payee or agreed responsible adult" would get the money.

It's unclear if the person can give that money to Jay. FOX 13 is reaching out to prosecutors for information on the payment to a third party and will update this story when we hear back.

RELATED: State to pay accused attacker $250 each day he's not admitted for treatment

King County Prosecuting Attorney Leesa Manion issued a statement on his admittance, calling out the state and the DSHS.

"These costly delays by the State of Washington are demoralizing to victims, and it’s also inhumane to allow defendants to further decompensate because of DSHS’ failure to meet their important obligations. The State of Washington could and should have prevented the delays in Mr. Jay’s case -- and in the nearly 100 other ongoing cases where individuals are held in the King County Jail waiting for appropriate services at Western State Hospital.

When DSHS fails to provide timely evaluations or services, judges must face the difficult decision of whether to release these individuals — many of whom are still in crisis — or dismiss the charges. It is unsafe for individuals with severe mental illness, and sometimes a history of violent behavior, to be released simply because DSHS is failing to provide legally mandated competency treatment and services.

Failures like these are ticking time bombs with deadly consequences. It makes no sense for DSHS to wait for someone to commit a serious felony before providing services."

In a response, DSHS emphasized they’re making progress on new facilities. They provided this statement to FOX 13:

"The Department of Social and Health Services continues to take numerous steps to admit as many patients as possible to the state hospitals and our residential treatment facilities, as well as complete current capital projects that will expand bed capacity. This includes a blend of near-term efforts, and long-term projects." 

"We are nearing the opening of two wings at Western State Hospital specially dedicated to competency restoration/evaluation patients, which will add 58 beds. 

"A 16-bed state-operated civil treatment facility will start accepting patients as soon as next week on the Maple Lane campus, just south of Rochester. This facility will serve the long-term civil commitment population, including patients who are currently occupying beds at the state hospitals.

"You can read more about the 16-bed facility here

"Three facilities, totaling 48 beds, are currently in development in Clark County. These beds, targeted to open in 2025, will have capacity to serve patients committed as felony conversion patients, pursuant to RCW 10.77.086. The Department has also received $51 million to design a new 350-bed forensic hospital on the campus of WSH. The new hospital is scheduled to be finished in 2028."