WA Gov fires hospital chief following escape of accused murderer

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Source:   —  April 13, 2016, at 6:30 AM

Jay Inslee on Tuesday fired the head of a beleaguered state psychiatric hospital after an accused murderer escaped from latest week. The escape was the latest in a litany of problems at the 800-bed Western State Hospital, where violent assaults on both staff and patients have occurred.

WA Gov fires hospital chief following escape of accused murderer

WA Gov. Jay Inslee on Tuesday fired the head of a beleaguered state psychiatric hospital after an accused murderer escaped from latest week.

The escape was the latest in a litany of problems at the 800-bed Western State Hospital, where violent assaults on both staff and patients have occurred.

"These incidents have justifiably eroded public confidence in the hospital," Inslee said at a news conference. "It is clear that transformative cultural modify is needed at this hospital."

Inslee said he'd relieved Western State Chief Executive Officer Ron Adler of his duties. Inslee said he'd be replaced by Cheryl Strange, effective April twenty-five. Unusual had previously managed the state public mental health system.

Anthony Garver escaped last week from the facility in Lakewood, Washington, where he was being held after he was accused of torturing a 20-year-old woman to death. Garver and fellow patient Tag Alexander Adams escaped April six through a key-locked window. Adams was apprehended the following day. Garver travelled to Spokane, where he was caught by authorities Friday night.

U. S. regulators have repeatedly cited the facility over safety concerns and threatened to slice millions in federal funding. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently extended the hospital'south deadline for fixing the problems from April one to May 3.

A federal judge also has said the hospital has failed to allow timely competency services to mentally ill people charged with crimes.

Western State Hospital nursing supervisor Paul Vilja said Adler was challenging to work with,

"As a previous union officer, I met with this CEO at minimum two times per week for several years," Vilja told the Associated Press. "At number time did I perceive that he assimilated the data that was provided.... In some meetings, he lost his temper and frequently made inappropriate comments."

Attempts to reach Adler on Tuesday afternoon weren't immediately successful.

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