A Daughter’s Safety

At the age of twenty-five, Juliet was as vulnerable as a child. Despite this knowledge, Eastern State Hospital, where Juliet was a patient, ignored warning signs and allowed another patient with a history of assault and sexual aggression to roam throughout the hospital unrestricted. That patient entered Juliet’s room one morning and raped her. Juliet’s parents fought DSHS for three years before winning a $3 million judgment. Read more.


JulietAt the age of four, Juliet was diagnosed with developmental delays. As her body matured, her outlook remained fixed. At the age of eighteen, despite reaching the age of majority, Juliet continued to exhibit the emotional and intellectual characteristics of a young child, so much so that her physician described her as “a female Forrest Gump.”

Juliet faced many challenges due to autism, other disabilities, and a judicial determination that she was legally incompetent. Eventually, she was admitted as a patient at Eastern State Hospital, the largest state-operated mental hospital in eastern Washington. There, Juliet was diagnosed as “gravely disabled.” After working with her for four years, the hospital staff recognized that she was a highly vulnerable patient.

Another patient, Jesse Vasquez, posed a significant danger to others, particularly females, and was known as one of the most volatile and sexually aggressive patients at the hospital. Despite dozens of observed and documented warning signs, Vasquez was permitted to roam freely throughout the hospital. Without supervision, Vasquez prowled the female ward. One morning at 8:45 a.m., Vasquez entered Juliet’s room, where he forcibly removed her clothing and raped her. 

Juliet’s parents hired David to represent Juliet and pursue claims against Eastern State Hospital. After three years of fact finding and litigation, Juliet prevailed. The US District Court for the Eastern District of Washington entered a judgment in Juliet’s favor for $3 million. This represents the largest judgment ever paid by the State of Washington, Department of Social and Health Services, Mental Health Division.

Juliet’s parents state, “David diligently pursued legal action and coordinated a competent team of experts to evaluate the facts pertinent to the rape. We are very pleased with the process and outcome of the lawsuit.”
Areas of Expertise: Social Work Negligence, Nursing Home Negligence, Daycare Negligence, and School Negligence