New trial for sex predator delayed until 2013

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WALLA WALLA — This week’s trial to determine if a sexually violent predator convicted of crimes in Walla Walla County should be released from lockup at the Special Commitment Center at McNeil Island has been postponed until next year.

The proceedings for Rolando Aguilar are scheduled to begin May 7 in Walla Walla County Superior Court. The trial had been slated to start Tuesday, but was continued to allow sufficient time for Aguilar’s substitute attorney — who was recently appointed — to prepare his case.

Aguilar is the first person in the state to have been civilly committed by a jury under the 1990 law allowing sex predators to be locked up indefinitely after serving their criminal sentences.

A court-appointed, licensed psychologist reportedly believes Aguilar no longer meets the criteria of a sexually violent predator due to a change in his condition from participation in treatment. That’s in contrast to an annual report by experts from the state Department of Social and Health Services that concludes otherwise.

A jury is to sort out the conflicting opinions and make a determination at Aguilar’s trial.

Aguilar, 52, was found to be a sex predator at a civil commitment trial in early 1991 after serving a 20-month prison sentence for third-degree rape. The civil commitment jury determined he suffered from an anti-social personality disorder, making him a continued threat to the community.

He had raped numerous women, many of whom were strangers, and had a history of violence toward people he knew.

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