SEATTLE - A King County judge has ordered the state to pay a man, who is accused in two separate attacks at a light rail station and bus stop in Seattle, $250 for each day he is not admitted for treatment.
Alexander Jay was charged with second-degree assault for allegedly throwing a woman down several flights of stairs at the light rail station in the Chinatown-International District. He was also charged with first-degree assault after a stabbing at a nearby bus stop that same day as the alleged light rail attack.
In April, Jay was deemed incompetent to stand trial and he was ordered to spend the next three months in an inpatient facility until he understands the charges made against him.
Prosecutors said they will not drop the charges and both cases remain ongoing.
On Thursday, a judge ordered the State Department of Social and Health Services, which is separate from the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, to pay $250 each day that Jay is not admitted for restoration treatment.
The court found Jay’s due process rights have been violated.
He will be awarded the amount each day, which started accruing on May 9.
According to court documents, Jay has a criminal record dating back to 2000. His recent charges include home burglary, assault, attempted assault, and domestic violence. In total, Jay has had seven cases in King County in the last five years.
FOX 13 News spoke to officials with the Department of Social and Health Services who tell us this is not a rare situation.
In fact, there are nearly 400 people in jail waiting for beds with DSHS.
- Misdemeanor competency restoration orders: 60 clients are waiting in jail statewide for admission.
- 45-day first felony competency restoration: 202 clients are waiting in jail statewide for admission.
- 90-day first felony competency restoration: 131 clients are waiting in jail statewide for admission.
Officials with DSHS provided this statement regarding this situation:
"Over the past seven fiscal years, inpatient evaluations and competency restoration services have increased 87%.
We at the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services are working to grow capacity so people who experience mental illness and await competency evaluations and restoration services while incarcerated receive them in a timely manner and in an appropriate setting.
We are hopeful that the addition of 58 forensic beds at the new wing of Western State Hospital opening in a few months will help play a role in cutting wait times for those who need mental health services in the criminal court system."
DSHS tells us the earliest they expect to be able to get Jay into the system is mid-August.
At that rate, taxpayers will have paid more than $17k to Jay.