New Trial Ordered for Sexually Violent Predator in Benton County
A Superior Court Judge has set an October date for a trial to determine if a sexually violent predator should be released to the community.
Judge Carrie Runge will hear arguments starting in October to see if 56-year-old Stephen Robinson is a threat.
He was convicted of violent sexual offenses against young girls in Benton County in 1984 and again in Denver County in Colorado in 1999. He has served his time in Washington state, and was scheduled to be released July 13 of this year from the Walla Walla State Pen.
However, he was transported to the Washington state Special Commitment Center for his hearing. The Washington State Attorney General's office released this statement Tuesday, reading in part:
"The Attorney General’s Office SVP Unit alleges Robinson suffers from specific mental abnormalties and/or personality disorders that cause him to have serious difficulty in controlling his dangerous behavior and make him like to engage in predatory acts of sexual violence unless confined to a secure facility, namely the state’s Special Commitment Center on McNeil Island."
According to court documents, Robinson has admitted himself he would be likely to re-offend if released into the community. Potential courses of action were laid out by the AG's office in their statement:
"Robinson will now be detained at the state’s Special Commitment Center until his October 2014 trial. At trial, either a judge or jury will decide whether or not he meets the SVP criteria. If the judge or jury determines he is a sexually violent predator, Robinson will be confined indefinitely at the Special Commitment Center."
As of September, there are 293 such predators who are confined in Washington state. A specific date for the beginning of Robinson's trial was not released by the court or the AG's office. The trial will take place because his original offenses occurred in Benton County.