Court hearing delayed for Port Angeles man accused in bus assault, others

His defense attorney said he had not yet received the results of a psychological examination.

PORT ANGELES — A court hearing for a Port Angeles man accused of assaults on a Clallam Transit bus, the county jail and his home was reset Thursday because a psychological report key to his defense had not been provided to his attorney.

Riley Edge White, 59, is facing multiple assault charges.

Defense Attorney Harry Gasnick of Clallam Public Defender said he had not received the results of a psychological examination performed by Dr. Kenneth Muscatel.

A status hearing was canceled last Friday for the same reason.

Clallam County Superior Court Judge Brian Coughenour reset the hearing for 1:30 p.m. next Friday, Sept. 16.

“Mr. White, we don’t have that report yet,” Coughenour told the defendant.

“That test will make a decision as to what your defense intends to do.”

Gasnick has said the report could be used in a potential mental health-based defense such as diminished capacity or insanity.

White has claimed that he sustained a brain injury when he was beaten up in Mexico several years ago and that he has seizures and does not remember his actions during his seizures, court papers said.

White’s legal troubles began in May when he allegedly kicked and punched an 80-year-old woman on a Clallam Transit bus and assaulted the bus driver who came to the woman’s rescue.

Port Angeles police said White tried to kidnap the driver and take command of the parked bus in west Port Angeles on May 28.

The driver was able to escape from White’s chokehold and deactivate the bus battery, trapping White inside, according to the affidavit for probable cause.

The bus incident led to charges of first-degree attempted kidnapping, first-degree attempted robbery and two counts of second-degree assault.

After posting a $30,000 bail bond June 16, White was arrested the next morning at the bus stop near the courthouse entrance for violating a Clallam Transit permanent exclusion order.

He was later charged with felony custodial assault for allegedly punching a Clallam County jail officer July 11.

White posted a $50,000 bail bond July 29. He was arrested again Aug. 27 for allegedly assaulting a woman who rented a room at his South I Street residence.

Port Angeles police said the woman sustained facial bruises, contusions and a broken nose. The alleged victim told police that White began punching her without warning or provocation.

White pleaded not guilty last Friday to second-degree intentional assault for incident at his house.

His trials are scheduled for Oct. 17, Oct. 24 and Oct. 31, respectively.

White, who was led into court with extra security Thursday, is being held on $150,000 bond.


Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56450, or at rollikainen@peninsula