CRIME WATCH: Convicted child-killer charged with rape, bail set at $1 million

A convicted child-killer is in jail in lieu of a million dollars bail, charged with raping a woman who was incapacitated because of an untreated injury, and court documents say it happened in February in West Seattle.

The suspect is 40-year-old Chayce A. Hanson, convicted of killing his girlfriend’s 2-year-old daughter, Nenah Walters, in 2000, by kicking her down a flight of stairs. In 2001, he was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Five years later, a Supreme Court ruling led to a lesser conviction and shorter sentence.

Hanson was booked into the King County Jail Friday night, eight days after the filing of a second-degree rape charge in an incident that court documents say happened February 1st-2nd in West Seattle. The case was first reported by The Seattle Times; we learned of it when a reader sent us the link, and we subsequently obtained the court documents.

Prosecutors say the 41-year-old victim and suspect “live near each other and have known each other for a long time.” They had drinks at two local bars the night of February 1st and then, it is alleged, got into a car crash that was not reported to police but resulted in the victim suffering a head injury that left her unable to speak for days. The court documents detail extensive detective work including security-camera video from multiple establishments and parking lots helping trace what happened and when. The charging documents say Hanson is seen on security-camera video groping the “apparently passed out” victim in his car, and that there “is evidence supporting that when they left that location, the defendant crashed his car and (the victim) hit the windshield of the truck, causing her serious injuries. She had visible injuries to her face.” She had no memory of what happened after agreeing to go drinking with Hanson, until waking up in his bed with the alleged rape in progress despite her inability to communicate.

Police say she walked back to her residence the morning of February 2nd, where a neighbor found her disheveled, with bloody face, hands, and clothing. The neighbor took her to a nearby clinic, where the victim was unable to communicate with health-care workers except to write her name over and over again. An ambulance was called to take her to Harborview Medical Center. The court documents say she still could not speak, except to say, “I, I, I,” when police first tried to talk with her there. A day later, they tried again, but she was unable to form sentences.

The various video clips obtained by police suggest, they say, that the crash happened sometime after 11:35 pm February 1st. Her injuries suggested she was in the center of the bench seat of Hanson’s truck at the time, but no medical attention was sought for her, nor was the crash reported. Evidence found by police suggest it likely happened near 40th SW/SW Genesee, where some neighbors recalled hearing a loud sound around 2 am February 2nd.

Though the charging documents filed March 30th say the suspect and victim lived near each other, they list a Des Moines house as Hanson’s “last known” address. He got out of prison in 2009, according to the Times report, and the charging documents say he had fourth-degree-assault convictions in 2012 and 2015. More recently, prosecutors added: “The defendant has been making numerous attempts to contact (the victim) recently and she is quite fearful of him.” The warrant issued for his arrest carried $500,000 bail, but tonight the KCJ register lists him as being held in lieu of $1 million bail, with an additional half-million dollars set for investigation of witness intimidation. We’ll be following up with prosecutors tomorrow.

33 Replies to "CRIME WATCH: Convicted child-killer charged with rape, bail set at $1 million"

  • newnative April 9, 2017 (9:56 pm)

    I would like to know who the judge was that reduced his sentence after he killed a baby. He should never have been free to hurt anyone else. 

    • WSB April 9, 2017 (10:12 pm)

      Since that was backstory to the defendant and not to this crime itself, it was somewhat condensed, but our story above does include links to stories from the time that explained it: Hanson’s original conviction was one of those thrown out because of the Supreme Court “Andress ruling” – which basically said that you can’t be convicted of murder if the death was the result of an unintentional assault. (I didn’t recall this, but stories about that original ruling note that the Andress case had to do with a death resulting from a West Seattle bar brawl – )

      After that invalidated Hanson’s conviction, news reports say (court documents from the early ’00s are not available online so I cannot verify directly), he pleaded guilty to the most serious charge that could be sought, manslaughter, and was sentenced to 10 years. Again, the two links in the second paragraph above are from his original conviction/sentencing and from the re-conviction on the lesser charge. – TR

  • Double Dub Resident April 10, 2017 (6:05 am)

    Unintentional assault?!! I think kicking a 2 year old down a flight of stairs is pretty damn intentional. Then he gets let out early and then 2 assault convictions and now this. Pathetic

  • newnative April 10, 2017 (6:12 am)

    I am sorry. I did go back and read one of the links. Another link kept redirecting me to the App Store. I still think that after reading the story of how he killed her and what he did afterwards, withholding care, should have kept him in prison. 

    • WSB April 10, 2017 (11:57 am)

      If a link sent you to the App Store, apologies, that would have been on the Times’ side; we don’t have any ads attached to links, no pop-ups, no redirects, no takeovers, etc. – only problem I have with their links is their paywall, but that will play differently for people depending on whether you subscribe to them, or, if not, if you have hit their limit of “free links.”

  • John April 10, 2017 (6:38 am)

    I was confused by the Seattle Times article’s mention of a bar on Fauntleroy Way?

    • WSB April 10, 2017 (7:02 am)

      The court documents say he was at West Seattle Brewing when he saw her walk by and asked her to come in and have a drink with him. That’s also one of the places where security video helped detectives figure out the timeline of events, according to the police narrative in the paperwork. – TR

  • Seattlite April 10, 2017 (7:11 am)

    This pos should be behind bars for the rest of his life.  The judge who let him out of his 25-year sentence for killing a small, innocent child should answer for his horrible decision.

  • flimflam April 10, 2017 (7:19 am)

    sure, why not let a child murderer out of prison early? what could go wrong. ugh.

  • mehud7 April 10, 2017 (8:49 am)

    From the link to the Seattle Times:  “Known as the Andress decision, it said that an assault leading to an unintended death cannot be a murder but instead must be prosecuted as manslaughter.”

    Assault is not unintentional, but I guess a death from it can be…

    Chayce A. Hanson is very dangerous because he allows his victims to suffer.

  • Mark Schletty April 10, 2017 (9:00 am)

    While i do understand the murder conviction reduction to manslaughter, and earlier release, i dont understand the two following gross misdemeanor 4th degree assault convictions not resulting in significant prison time considering the previous record of this person. Those assault convictions show a consistant pattern of violent criminal behavior and should not have been dealt with lightly by the judges in those cases. Something is seriously wrong with some of our area judges.

    • WSB April 10, 2017 (9:16 am)

      One of those cases was not available via the docket page but I did just get the original charge and the sentencing summary via ECR Online. It was a domestic-violence case involving kicking a woman described as his girlfriend at a bar in Burien – and she had a protection order against him. The sentence appears to have been time served by then, though there is no indication how long that was, and KCJ’s register doesn’t go back beyond a year or so. Oddly, while the incident and the charge are dated February 2012, the sentencing hearing form is dated 2015 as are other actions in the case – will research later what the gap was about. – TR

  • thee April 10, 2017 (10:23 am)

    Now that Chayce is finally is the slammer, what happens to Jones BBQ? He ran that circus before he went on the run. 

    • WSB April 10, 2017 (10:45 am)

      He is not listed in the documents as an employee of any business. I don’t believe he was “on the run” at the time of arrest in this case, as the warrant had just been issued a week earlier, though some cross-referencing shows he apparently was “on the run” after the 2012 case noted in my comment above, and arrested in Las Vegas. Lot of following-up to be done on this one and I will do my best.

      • WestSeaWoman April 11, 2017 (9:15 am)

        Yes, please do research his local involvement. 

        He is one of the majority owners in Jones BBQ on Fauntleroy Way. 

        • WSB April 11, 2017 (9:31 am)

          I have checked all public records I can find so far – city business license, LLC to which it refers, non-criminal court records – and he’s not listed anywhere. Doesn’t mean it’s not so, but it’s not anywhere on record that I can find. Of course, not everything related to a business is public record. Whatever the case, he’s certainly not working there (or anywhere else) right now, as he remains in King County Jail in lieu of $1,000,000 bail. I’m still working on an overall followup on the case and his record preceding it – TR

        • Dan Kearney April 18, 2017 (12:08 am)

          No, he is not affiliated with Jones BBQ. A different person, a woman with the same name, used to work there according to:

  • JanS April 10, 2017 (10:46 am)

    sounds like just a delightful fella :(

  • Heather April 10, 2017 (10:51 am)

    This is perhaps one of the most cruel series of perpetrations about which I have ever read. My heart absolutely  goes out to the victim. I am so thankful that it appears to have been so well researched and documented by the police for a prosecution. 

  • Carole April 10, 2017 (10:56 am)

    Dom viol assaults are often pled down to 4th degree misdemeanor from a higher charge.  Frequently there are issues with the victim recanting or otherwise refusing to cooperate. Misdemeanor is local jail time, not prison.  Changing sentencing is the responsibility of the legislature. Judges are bound by the state guidelines.  As for the reduction to manslaughter this was the result of a state Supreme Court ruling brought by another complainant (Andress) which was then applied to all applicable cases which had not yet exhausted the appeal process.  So not one judge but a majority of the Supremes.  The local judge who had to impose the lesser sentence was required to do so by law.

       There was a similar situation some years ago in which a US Supreme ruling in Blakeley resulted in limitations on judges imposing exceptional sentences above the guidelines.  That also applied to any cases which had not exhausted all appeals. I worked at court at the time and had to pull all the cases where exceptional/higher sentences had been imposed. Fortunately all those I pulled had exhausted their appeal remedies so the longer sentences stayed in effect.

  • wscommuter April 10, 2017 (11:11 am)

    I understand the ranting here – this guy sounds like a very bad person, but most of the comments above reveal that folks don’t understand what the law requires.  The Andress decision, which is controversial, was decided by our state supreme court and applied to a wide variety of murder cases.  There wasn’t “one” judge with this particular person who unilaterally gave him a break – the trial judge was required to do so by the Andress decision.  So if you think Andress was a mistake, feel free to research the justices who voted in the majority for that decision and vote against them when they run next – here’s a clue – several of those justices are no longer on the court.  Please do read the actual decision before you rush to judgment too.

     As to the comment about the 4th degree misdemeanor assault convictions and “lengthy prison terms” … the statute puts a maximum amount of punishment for any misdemeanor at 1 year in jail.  No judge can impose more than that.   

  • Sigh April 10, 2017 (5:37 pm)

    And how many of you “lockhimups” have called your elected representatives demanding to have your taxes raised to build more prisons and support his incarceration?

    Thought so.

    • Double Dub Resident April 10, 2017 (7:22 pm)

      Yeah sigh, way to come to this POS’ defense trying to shame law abiding citizens that don’t kill children and rape women. Aren’t you awesome?!

    • Seattlite April 10, 2017 (10:59 pm)

       Sigh…There’s no guarantee that the tax dollars would be spent on what you vote for in Seattle/KingCounty.  Honest, viable leadership is lacking in Seattle in case you have not noticed.  I pray that some leaders who actually want to do the right thing for Seattle/KingCounty will step up to the plate for the next vote.  If not, Seattle/KingCounty will continue to have unresolved issues:  traffic, homelessness, screwed up roadways, etc.

  • wscommuter April 10, 2017 (9:41 pm)

    No, Double Dub … Sigh is just pointing out that while it is easy to condemn this particular bad human being who has committed heinous crimes … there is a certain hypocrisy from folks who are not willing to vote to support the taxes it takes to administer and enforce the law, from paying for more police and prosecutors … to adequately funding our courts … to building more jail/prison space … and so on.  

    It’s easy to hate the bad people; its harder to back that up with our responsibility to pay for what it takes to lock these people up.  

    • Double Dub Resident April 11, 2017 (6:27 pm)

      wscommuter, sigh took the time to shame law abiding citizens over condemning this POS. Sigh also, in calling people “lockimups” is implicitly  stating they’re not for doing that and that people wanting this person locked up are being unreasonable. 

      Also, it is more likely that the people who would be against tax increases for jails /prisons would be ones who are liberal rather than the more conservative when it comes to crime, so your argument is not as sound as you think it is. The problem right now is that everyone’s attention is on all the other stupidity our “great leaders” are trying to tax everyone for

  • A.W. April 11, 2017 (2:58 pm)

    If this is the same guy that I think it is (according to the Jones BBQ comments), thus douchebag has come into the bar I work a few times and has been asked to leave for a few different reasons, including screaming profanities during a dinner rush and threatending staff with physical harm after being asked to leave. If it is the same guy, I always knew he was insane and capable of harming people for nearly anything. I hope this guy goes away for good and rots in a deep, dark cell. I don’t dislike many people,  but this SOB…. there’s a special place for people like him.

  • slimshaddie April 14, 2017 (11:20 pm)

    WSB, will you keep us updated on Hanson’s next court date?  Since he is a silent business owner, I wonder will he put half his BBQ business up as collateral for the 500,000 bail.  I am saddened that God gave him many chances to straighten out his life and he did not see it as a blessing.  Three strikes he is out.  -SS

    • WSB April 14, 2017 (11:35 pm)

      We will track this case as closely as we can. Since he’s been arraigned on the current charges, now the case goes into the process that many criminal cases enter – case-setting hearings that often get set and postponed, set and postponed, for reasons from discovery to attorneys’ schedules to plea negotiations – but currently, he has a case-setting hearing on April 25th. The various court documents filed along with the additional charge also suggest his bail was set at $1 million, counter to the jail register having it at $500,000 (it was $1 million when we wrote the original story last weekend), so I need to check with prosecutors about that next week ($1 million is the amount they had requested) – TR

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