West Seattle Crime Watch: Ryan Cox arraignment postponed, evaluation ordered

Today’s scheduled King County Superior Court arraignment was postponed for 34-year-old Ryan Cox, charged with malicious harassment (hate crime) for hitting a man with a baseball bat in an attack allegedly based on his perception of the victim’s sexual orientation. (Here’s our original October 29th report on his arrest following the incident.) Cox instead will now undergo a mental-health evaluation, to see if he is competent to stand trial. At least three previous cases involving Cox have been dismissed because he was found not competent, and he wasn’t considered a likely subject to be “restored” to competency (via forced drug treatment). King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office spokesperson Dan Donohoe says Cox’s arraignment has been rescheduled for December 5th, and a competency hearing will be part of the proceedings.

14 Replies to "West Seattle Crime Watch: Ryan Cox arraignment postponed, evaluation ordered"

  • SJ2 November 14, 2012 (2:24 pm)

    Seriously? His crimes keep getting worse and worse. I am afraid what could happen next if he is not found competent to stand trial.

  • B November 14, 2012 (3:03 pm)

    I believe if he is found not competent, he is committed? Or is that not the case?

    Doubtful they just release him..

    • WSB November 14, 2012 (3:11 pm)

      It’s complicated. I learned something about this when covering misdemeanor cases against him that were handled in the Mental Health Court that’s related to Seattle Municipal Court. For misdemeanor cases, he was sent to Western State Hospital and evaluated for possible commitment – because of medical privacy, no one could comment from there on whether he ever WAS committed. If not committed, they are literally, we learned, put on a bus headed back this way – because by that point, there are no pending criminal charges, and what happens from there is not the state/county/whomever’s problem. Cox made a comment at one such hearing along the lines of, just hurry up and send me to Western, I like it better than jail. Also, the amount of time that might be allotted for “restoring” competency is longer for a serious crime – not sure how serious this is considered, but he is charged with assault, too, so it might give doctors (etc.) more leeway. We will of course again continue to track the case – TR

  • Sonic November 14, 2012 (4:45 pm)

    Excerpt from one of his competency hearings in 2010 (this is from WSB):
    So the charges are to be dismissed and Cox will be referred to Western State Hospital for “possible civil commitment.” Asked if he understood what that meant, Cox replied, “I could use the 40 bucks.” Judge Charles said, “I don’t know what that means, but …” Cox replied, “That’s the walking money they give you … when I was dismissed before.”

  • pam November 14, 2012 (4:53 pm)

    Can a victim sue the city/county/state for releasing someone who continually is a menace to society and now injuring someone?

  • CandrewB November 14, 2012 (6:07 pm)

    Pam, if you suffer real damages at the hands of this man, you may be able to reach a quick settlement. This isn’t the type of thing they would want to publicize.

  • old timer November 14, 2012 (11:34 pm)

    If Pam suffered REAL damage, she wouldn’t be in a position to make any kind of settlement.
    But, her estate might.

  • Krm66 November 15, 2012 (8:34 am)

    Seems like the system is playing Russian roulette with the pubic. Cox has gone from vandalism to assault with a weapon. I just hope I am not the next victim of his.

  • Anthroman November 15, 2012 (11:07 am)

    A few years ago I was assaulted (punched in the face) & the attacker was deemed not competent to stand trial & committed for 14 days then released. I’ve seen him harassing people in South Lake Union recently. Revolving door.

  • Harry Reems November 15, 2012 (3:18 pm)

    Until Cox is held acountable for his alleged actions, he will continue to terrorize the citizens of West Seattle. It seems like the courts are protecting a homophobe instead of protecting the community.

    I am afraid that the worst is yet to come with this man.

  • Ben November 15, 2012 (4:05 pm)

    unfortunately the likeliest “resolution” i see is when this guy either kills someone or picks a victim who has a concealed carry permit (or is otherwise packing heat) and who is able to use the firearm to defend him/herself.
    i’d far prefer this troubled guy get the treatment he so obviously needs, ASAP, but our society has collectively decided not to take responsibility for mental illness, so instead we collectively face the continuing cycle of violence and pain.

    • WSB November 15, 2012 (4:13 pm)

      Ben … that last part is so sadly true. It is also the case with the White Center murder, which we are continuing to cover on our partner site White Center Now … the suspect, accused of killing his own mom, apparently struggled with mental illness, and committed violent crimes previously.

  • AIDM November 16, 2012 (10:25 am)

    It seems like the Morgan Junction community should be a little more involved in this case than we have in the past. Has a member from the community ever testified at one of Cox’s hearings? One idea would be for the Morgan Junction Association to hire an attorney or find a pro-bono West Seattle attorney to file a friend of the court brief in order to present the community’s distress in having this person repeatedly returned to Morgan Junction and West Seattle while the severity of his crimes escalate.

    • WSB November 16, 2012 (10:35 am)

      AIDM, great ideas – if you or someone else can help with them. Like most community councils, MoCA is a very small core group of volunteers with other community members occasionally dropping in. They meet quarterly (I think their next meeting will be in January). Good ideas just need people to help make them happen. http://www.morganjunction.org should have contact info. – TR

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