Case dismissed against inmate accused of assaulting officer

Judge rules after two hung juries

PORT ANGELES — After two trials that resulted in hung juries, Clallam County prosecutors have dismissed a case against a Clallam Bay Correction Center inmate who was charged with punching a corrections officer.

Roy Purcell Jackson, 30, was charged with one count of custodial assault for an alleged attack in the West End prison last October.

Two mistrials were declared when juries could not reach a verdict after separate trials in April and July.

Clallam County Superior Court Judge Brian Coughenour signed Friday an order dismissing the case at the request of Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Steve Johnson.

The case was dismissed with prejudice, meaning the Class C felony charge cannot be re-filed.

Jackson remained in state Department of Corrections (DOC) custody Friday at the Washington Corrections Center near Shelton.

“After consultation with Clallam Bay (prison) personnel, we determined that trying this case a third time would not be a wise use of our resources or those of DOC,” Johnson said after a Friday court hearing.

“Our decision was informed in part by the majority of jurors voting to acquit after the second trial.”

The Clallam County Sheriff’s Office said Jackson entered a prison office where officer Michael Chandler was working and punched him “at least five times” with a closed fist Oct. 7, 2018, according to the affidavit for probable cause.

Deputy Cody Anderson said Chandler had a swollen left ear and a bloodshot eye after the attack but was not seriously injured. Chandler testified at both trials.

Chandler told investigators that Jackson became agitated the day before the attack because the kitchen had not provided him with a special meal, according to Anderson’s report.

Chandler then provided a halal meal for Jackson, which Jackson did not eat, court papers said.

Anderson said Jackson suddenly attacked Chandler when Chandler was seated in an office.

Jackson was arrested in May 2011 in connection with a shooting on a Metro bus in Kent, The Seattle Times reported.

Jackson was charged with first- and second-degree assault for critically wounding a SeaTac man in the shooting and threatening the bus driver at gunpoint, according to the Times.

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Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56450, or at [email protected].

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