Image: Washington State Dept. of Corrections
The Times and P-I are all over this breaking crime story. DNA has matched a suspect, James Anthony Williams (pictured), to the New Year's Eve murder of Capitol Hill resident Shannon Harps. Both papers describe a long past history of schizophrenia and violence, likely meaning that the question of whether he's mentally competent to stand trial will take years to resolve. The only good news here is that he's off the street, whether guilty of this crime or not, and not a danger to others (or to himself). The bad news, beyond Harps' apparently random killing, is how the mental-health system in at least three states failed to help and/or contain the guy. It's the kind of long, sad, complicated story that our esteemed former colleague Philip Dawdy might once have written for us. Perhaps he'll take it up on his blog.