The Franklin County jail roster shows Justin T. Husom has been behind bars for 240 days as of Sunday, even though he was released in December on a medical emergency furlough.
Husom, a former Franklin County corrections officer, physically has served three months — Sept. 12 to Dec. 12 — of his 10-month sentence for having sexual contact with two female inmates.
His attorney, Scott Johnson, believes Husom should be given credit for his “time at liberty” since the release so he doesn’t have to report back to the jail by May 29.
Johnson filed a motion Friday in Franklin County Superior Court asking a judge to rule that the sentence has been satisfied.
A hearing on the matter has not been scheduled.
Judge Michael G. McCarthy with Yakima County Superior Court has presided over the Franklin County case.
McCarthy was surprised in mid-February to learn that Husom had been out of custody since the judge was never asked by jail administrators to approve the medical emergency furlough.
At the time, prosecutors said Husom completed 91 days in jail and had 209 days left on his sentence. However, Husom’s “days in custody” continue to accrue on the online jail roster.
Sheriff Jim Raymond — who was not in office when Husom was released without a court order — explained to the Herald in February that Husom still is considered in custody while on the furlough. He added that Husom basically is in a holding pattern and is not getting credit for the days he’s not actually locked up.
Husom is not getting any special treatment, and will serve every minute ordered by the court, Raymond said.
Husom pleaded guilty in July to felony first-degree custodial sexual misconduct, along with two gross misdemeanor charges of second-degree custodial sexual misconduct and official misconduct.
That came four months after he resigned from his job of more than three years.
Husom initially denied the rumors when confronted by his supervisors. Then, after failing a polygraph test, he admitted having oral sex with a female inmate in an off-camera storage room in exchange for a razor for the woman.
It was only after his resignation that a second inmate came forward and reported having a sexual relationship with Husom in exchange for contraband.
It is illegal for jail employees to have sexual contact with a person under their supervision. Washington law says consent of the victim is not a valid defense
After sentencing in September, the judge denied a defense request that Husom be allowed to serve the time on work release.
Then while locked up, Husom had kidney problems and twice needed to be taken from the jail to nearby Lourdes Medical Center in Pasco for treatment, Johnson said.
He was released from the jail Dec. 12 because it was a “serious medical issue,” and a decision was made by the previous jail administration to give Husom a leave of absence “so Franklin County wouldn’t have to pay his medical expenses,” Johnson said.
No conditions were placed on Husom when he was let go, though Raymond has said Husom was supposed to report back once he dealt with his medical issues.
Johnson told Judge McCarthy in February that he was not consulted about his client’s furlough, and brought it to the court’s attention because there is no legal authority for Husom to be out of custody when the judge had ordered him jailed.
McCarthy decided to give Husom time to recover and recuperate, and directed him to return to jail by 4 p.m. May 29.
The motion says Johnson tried to resolve the limbo that Husom “had been placed in by virtue of his being considered ‘in custody’ by Franklin County but also being physically released without a court order.”
Johnson claims neither the Attorney General’s Office, which prosecuted the case, nor Franklin County considered it a pressing matter that needed to be fixed. Thus, Husom should be entitled to day-for-day credit against his sentence, the lawyer said.
While he has been a free man, Husom has not had any new criminal convictions, the motion said.