Followup: Sealth car-attack suspect charged, released from jail

December 4, 2012 at 8:46 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 16 Comments

Two updates tonight in the incident that sent two Chief Sealth International High School students to the hospital after a car hit them last Wednesday: The woman arrested the next day, 37-year-old Amy Lynn O’Brien, is now charged with two counts of second-degree assault and one count of felony hit-and-run, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office website. The King County Jail Register says she is out of jail as of just before 6 o’clock tonight; though her bail was set at $250,000 last week, the register describes it as a “conditional release” – so far, we have not found court documents explaining why, so we will have to follow up with prosecutors tomorrow. O’Brien’s arraignment is scheduled for December 17th.


  1. Please do follow up. As the aunt of one of these girls I’d sure like to know how this was such a low charge to begin with and how they can let her out after trying to kill two girls.

    Comment by Florence Fiddler Lovell — 9:29 pm December 4, 2012 #

  2. And how does she have $250,000 bail at 4pm and at 6pm walks out with no bail? Lets hope she isn’t driving! Looking forward to more news tomorrow cuz something isn’t adding up.

    Comment by Seriously? — 9:48 pm December 4, 2012 #

  3. Why does a photo/mugshot of Ms O’Brien seem so hard to find? Seattle Times has a photo of the back of her head! Just curious what she looks like . . .

    Comment by E — 11:05 pm December 4, 2012 #

  4. Mugshots are not made public unless (a) a person is being sought by police and they decide to ask the public for help, or (b) they have served time in state prison. Neither applied here. Jail booking shots are not released to the media. I assume the back of her head was from her bail hearing last week; often the defense lawyers ask the judge to prohibit photography of the suspect, and often the judge says something like, just don’t show her face. At her arraignment, photography likely will be possible, although arraignments are usually held in a courtroom that is a very poor environment for photography – the bench is in a room that is walled off (glass) from the very small spectator (etc.) area and separated by a couple rows of lawyers and others – to get something resembling a decent shot, you have to be in a certain spot along the glass, pointing your camera a certain way …

    Comment by WSB — 11:23 pm December 4, 2012 #

  5. Please do let us know what you learn from the prosecutor’s office. As someone who lives in the area, it is very concerning to find out this woman has been released.

    Comment by DelridgeResident — 7:47 am December 5, 2012 #

  6. Did the second girl go home from Harborview yet?

    Comment by Mary — 8:47 am December 5, 2012 #

  7. Mary – when last we talked with Harborview, the family had asked to keep her information private. The only public information since then has been the description of her in critical condition as of the time the report was filed for last week’s bail hearing. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 9:05 am December 5, 2012 #

  8. Assault? I would say attempted murder.

    Comment by Morgan — 9:06 am December 5, 2012 #

  9. I’m at the courthouse for another case but have just received this paperwork. According to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, while they asked for her to be kept in jail on the same $250K bail, the judge opted to release her on “personal recognizance.”

    Comment by WSB — 9:25 am December 5, 2012 #

  10. Can you provide a name for the judge to help aid folks when voting for judges

    Comment by rico — 9:49 am December 5, 2012 #

  11. Another example of the way the law refuses to take automobiles seriously. If she had used a gun she would still be in jail, but because of US car culture sociopathy, she’s out on the streets to maim or kill others.

    Comment by RoomWithAView — 10:37 am December 5, 2012 #

  12. The judge appears, from another document I found online, to have been Judge Theresa Doyle.

    Comment by WSB — 11:06 am December 5, 2012 #

  13. Thank you for the judges name. I am keeping a list of judges that let people out/off. We need to get rid of these judges.

    Comment by Morgan — 11:17 am December 5, 2012 #

  14. How does someone go from 250,000 dollar bail to release on personal recognizance? That seems like a drastic difference to me. One judge determines that probable cause existed to hold her on such a high bail amount, and then the next day a judge releases without bail. Something is wrong here. Perhaps the woman is terminally ill… Who knows.

    Comment by DelridgeResident — 7:47 pm December 5, 2012 #

  15. She reports to Judge Richard McDermott (his email is available at if you’d like to voice your concern. I plan on sending him an email.

    Comment by WS Parent — 9:58 pm December 5, 2012 #

  16. Thank you, WS parent.
    WSB- Can you provide the cause # for this case?

    Comment by ad — 12:20 am December 6, 2012 #

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