By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter
CHEHALIS – The 23-year-old accused of throwing a hospital employee out of the driver’s seat of her car after she got off work in the early morning hours on Tuesday was charged today with two felonies in Lewis County Superior Court.
Tommy W. Miller, Jr. of Lacey was brought before a judge this afternoon but his temporary defense attorney said Miller wouldn’t talk to him.
When Judge Andrew Toynbee queried Miller directly, he responded with random words and gibberish, Lewis County Chief Criminal Deputy Prosecutor Brad Meagher said.
Meagher said when Miller returns to court tomorrow, he will have an order prepared to get him evaluated at Western State Hospital.
“We don’t have any choice, it’s our only option,” Meagher told Miller’s family after the hearing.
He was charged today with first-degree attempted robbery and second-degree assault.
Prosecutors allege he approached the employee’s car in the parking lot at Providence Centralia Hospital and after trying to speak to her once, that when she turned her attention back to her phone, he opened her car door.
The victim, identified in court documents only by her initials A.T., told police he grabbed her with both hands by the front of her shirt and threw her onto the ground, ripping her brassiere in half, tearing her top and leaving her with scrapes on her hands and knees, Lewis County Senior Deputy Prosecutor Will Halstead wrote in court papers.
She ran into the emergency room to call 911 and realized she had her car keys in her hand, according to Halstead.
Centralia police and deputies responding to the approximately 3:37 a.m. call eventually spotted Miller walking on nearby on Cooks Hill Road. He was booked into the Lewis County Jail.
Halstead wrote the victim had looked back as she ran and saw the headlights to her vehicle had been turned on.
“It appears the subject attempted to steal A.T.’s vehicle but was unsuccessful when he discovered the keys were no longer in the vehicle,” Halstead wrote.
Meagher today asked the judge to hold Miller on $100,000 bail. Temporary defense attorney noted his client appeared to have no criminal history.
Judge Toynbee set bail at $50,000.
Defense attorney Shane O’Rourke was appointed to represent him. His next hearing is scheduled for 1 p.m. tomorrow.
For background, read “Woman pulled from her car in Providence Centralia Hospital parking lot, runs inside to call 911” from Tuesday April 11, 2017, here