PORT ANGELES — Clallam County Superior Court Judge Simon Barnhart has denied former emergency medicine doctor Josiah Hill’s motion to reduce his conditions of release.
Hill on July 30 had pleaded not guilty to three counts of indecent liberties by a healthcare provider and one count of second-degree rape, which carry a maximum sentence of life in prison and $50,000 in fines.
A trial date is set for April 10 with another status hearing set for Jan. 20.
Hill’s bail was initially set at $1 million but was knocked down to $200,000, as it was believed he was not a flight risk and was cooperating with law enforcement and the court.
Hill, 39, was placed on an electronic home monitoring system (EHMS) and a GPS tracking system, for which he has to pay $432 per month to maintain.
On Nov. 30, Hill filed a motion to modify his condition of release, which was supported in an affidavit by his lawyer, Jared Ausserer of Puget Law Group. The court denied it last week.
The motion said Hill is experiencing financial hardship due to the cost of the EHMS and ankle monitor on top of other expenses which include $3,500 per month for supervised visitation with his children, $2,800 in rent for his home in Sequim, $918 in child support and $546 in tuition for his children’s school — a total of $8,196 in monthly expenses.
John Sheeran, standing in for Ausserer as Hill’s lawyer last Friday, argued that Hill has been compliant with all the conditions of his release since they were imposed in late July and that the removal of the EHMS and ankle monitor would lessen his financial burden.
Michele Devlin, chief criminal deputy prosecuting attorney, argued that since the original conditions of release were ordered, three more charges of indecent liberties have been filed against Hill.
She also said more evidence will likely be entered into the record in the coming days.
In her argument, Devlin also said Hill had allegedly made threatening comments about those who said he had assaulted them when he worked at Olympic Medical Center through Peninsula Emergency Services, Inc. (PESI).
Hill is currently in divorce court in Snohomish County where his wife has filed for a civil protection order for her and her children, citing psychological abuse from Hill, Devlin said.
In an affidavit filed in relation to that case, Hill’s wife said he had made threats to make the women in the charges from Port Angeles disappear. Hill had allegedly made those comments while in conversation with his mother.
In his response to the affidavit, also filed in Snohomish County Superior Court, Hill and his mother both denied those accusations.
Devlin closed her argument against the conditions of release by saying the person who posted Hill’s bail when he was initially arrested expressed concern that Hill would flee if not being monitored.
“The alternative to the home monitoring is jail,” Devlin said.
Devlin also said many of Hill’s alleged victims were either in court or viewing the status hearing via Zoom.
Hill was let go from PESI and the state Department of Health suspended his medical license soon after his arrest on July 14 for investigation of the charges.
Reporter Ken Park can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.