Recently a Pierce County Superior Court Judge ruled that names of people in crime related police incident reports are public records, and this is true even if the report involves patients at psychiatric hospitals, i.e. Western State Hospital. Judge Nevin found that, “[p]olice reports are not health-care records, and suspects in criminal actions are not patients, insofar as law enforcement is concerned.” The issue arose because the Washington State Department of Health Services, along with the a non-profit agency, sought to prevent: (1) the News Tribune from identifying a psychiatric patient accused of attacking a nurse, and (2) the City of Lakewood from turning over information to the newspaper. In turn, the records are public and thus accessible and discoverable.
When charged with a crime, whether it be for patronizing a prostitute or some other crime, it is a very smart idea to immediately hire a qualified Seattle Criminal Defense Attorney. The Seattle Criminal Defense Attorneys that make up the criminal defense team of SQ Attorneys are highly qualified and reputable Seattle Criminal Defense Lawyers that are dedicated to providing top notch, aggressive representation for those arrested or charged for crime all across Western Washington and the Greater Puget Sound region. The team creates success by working with law enforcement and the prosecuting attorney’s office to ensure that all facts and circumstances related to the allegations are considered in creating the fairest, most equitable and just resolution possible in light of all the surrounding circumstances of the given case. So, whether you are cited with an infraction or arrested and/or charged with misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor or a felony, protect yourself … call SQ Attorneys at (206) 441-0900.