Jury convicts killer of blinding his cellmate

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by KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on February 26, 2013 at 6:09 PM

Updated Tuesday, Feb 26 at 6:21 PM

SPOKANE, Wash. -- A jury found a Michael West Jr., 36, guilty of blinding a former cellmate. Jurors read the verdict Tuesday afternoon in a Spokane courtroom.

Jurors declared that West is guilty of first degree assault and second degree assault. 

West attacked his cellmate, Chad Bolstad, in 2010 while being held at Airway Heights Corrections Center. Court documents said that West gouged out Bolstad’s eyes.

The victim’s family was in court to hear the verdict. Bolstad’s mother, Darla Jackson, said she prays that a doctor will never give West another cellmate.

“Because it will end up ultimately that Chad will not be his last victim,” added Jackson.
 
West’s lawyers contested that his client should be found not guilty by reason of insanity. He was already serving time for killing another cellmate in 2004 at the Spokane County Jail.

West had been held in the mental health unit of the maximum security Washington State Penitentiary but was transferred to the medium security Airway Heights.

The judge set West’s sentencing for next month. West was ordered to stay at the Spokane County Jail in the meantime. He will be moved to a correctional facility in Walla Walla following his sentencing

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