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State to fight order sending Western State Hospital CEO to jail

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Western State Hospital

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — State officials say they will ask a judge to bock a contempt ruling that ordered the new CEO of the state’s largest psychiatric hospital to admit a patient or go to jail.

Gov. Jay Inslee’s spokeswoman Jaime Smith says the state Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) is preparing to ask a judge to stay Friday’s order that Western State CEO Cheryl Strange report to jail Wednesday.

The Seattle Times reports (http://goo.gl/uRAdbl) the agency didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

Pierce County Superior Court Commissioner Craig Adams issued the ruling.

Strange previously said she doesn’t plan to admit the patient. She says she can bump people up on the waitlist at the 800-bed hospital in Lakewood, but she didn’t believe “this stable patient” rises to that level.