EXCLUSIVE: Mother of erratic inmate Jose Linares shares mental health concerns

Mother of erratic inmate Jose Linares shares mental health concerns

YAKIMA COUNTY, Wash. -- Action News has been following the case of Jose Linares, a Sunnyside man behind bars on multiple charges of assault.

He was recently convicted of a stabbing that happened last year. But after attacking guards at the jail and even his own attorney, his mother is speaking out, saying her son needs help with an issue that courts and police are facing across the state.

The onslaught of violent attacks while in custody had many questioning if there was something more going on.

Linares's mother shared her concerns about his mental health in an exclusive interview.

The footage was shocking as Action News captured a court hearing gone wrong.

Jose Pedro Linares, 27, was shackled and restrained by four police officers. He also wore a face net and mask to prevent him from spitting.

It's still a haunting scene for his mother.

"His actions, his doing this, it's all anger; it's all fights," said Marthae Rivera.

Just days before, courtroom video showed Linares attacking his own attorney, who has filed assault charges and withdrew from the case.

It's violent behavior that started at a young age.

"They would call me from the school that he was out of control, throwing chairs, or fighting with the other children," said Rivera.

Linares and his twin brother ran with the wrong crowd, and he developed a meth addiction at age 12.

Counseling, boot camp, even relocating the family was still not enough to save him.

Now serving a 10-year sentence for a stabbing last February, additional assault charges have also racked up.

More courtroom video showed a fight with another inmate earlier this year. A brutal attack was also caught on camera of Linares punching a jail officer outside his cell.

"What really worries me is his mental state," said Rivera. "I feel that he's not getting the good help that he needs; he's not going to ask for it."

His twin brother is now in a mental health facility, but Linares was declared competent for his trial and rejected any help.

Jail officials said it's out of their hands.

"We have to treat the cause of the problem, which is mental health disease, so in my opinion he should be in a mental health facility," said Yakima jail consultant Harold Delia.

But prosecutors are aggressively charging Linares anyway.

"We're being very aggressive with him because we believe he's a danger to the community and we don't know of any mental health issues; that he has that issue has not been raised in court to my knowledge," said Yakima County prosecutor Joe Brusic.

His family is worried he has slipped through the cracks, unstable and even a danger to himself.

It's part of a pervasive issue statewide - the class action Trueblood lawsuit filed against the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) in July 2016 claims inmates aren't receiving proper mental health care.

Yakima is one of five counties in the ongoing suit and was awarded $965,000 so far this year.

"Once they're incarcerated they become much more risky because the environment creates more and more mental health problems for them," said Delia.

Linares's family still feels powerless and frustrated.

"I'm asking the courts to try to get him help," said Rivera. "Let's change what we can and let's accept what we can't, and just have faith in God."

Linares is due back in court next week for the assault charges filed by his former attorney.

About 29 percent of Yakima's inmates are getting mental health care because they have agreed to it. Linares has refused.

Delia said Linares's family can try to have a judge commit him involuntarily, but it's a lengthy process, with a backlog of cases at both Eastern State and Western State hospitals.

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