Public Safety Review Panel

The Public Safety Review Panel was established by the Washington State Legislature in 2010 (Chapter 263).

The panel is tasked with assessing the potential public safety risk and providing written recommendations to the Secretary of DSHS and to the Courts related to the proposed Conditional Release or Final Discharge of patients civilly committed to Western State Hospital or Eastern State Hospital who were found Not Guilty by Reason of Insanity 

In 2013, the legislature expanded the jurisdiction of the PSRP to include patients civilly committed to WSH or ESH who were found by the Court to be incompetent to stand trial for a violent offense (chapter 289).

Operation of the PSRP

The PSRP operates under the statutory authority of RCW 10.77.270, and business is conducted in accordance with the by-laws developed by the PSRP. The PSRP began reviewing cases and rendering recommendations in January of 2011. Review meetings are held at least monthly and are not open to the public due to patient confidentiality. Referrals for review are received by the PSRP from Western State Hospital and Eastern State Hospital.

PSRP Review Process:

  • Review of patient information, which includes proposed release criteria, psychological evaluations, court letters and risk assessment.
  • Provides Prosecutor and Defense attorney with the opportunity to submit input for consideration by the Panel.
  • If deemed to be necessary, the Panel may obtain an independent risk assessment in addition to the risk assessment submitted by DSHS.
  • Provides a summary of the referral and written recommendation to DSHS and the Court for their consideration.
  • The final determination to grant or deny a conditional or unconditional release is made by the court.
  • The Panel also provides advice and feedback to DSHS regarding relative policies at Western and Eastern State Hospitals.

PSRP Membership

The PSRP consists of a seven-member volunteer panel appointed by the Governor with expertise from a variety of fields mandated by statute:

  • Kari Reardon: PSRP Chair and Public Defender, Representative of Defender’s Association.
  • Katherine Michaelsen, MD: Vice-Chair and Psychiatrist.
  • Brooke Burbank: Pierce County Prosecuting Attorney.
  • Donta Harper, EdD: Senior Administrator, Department of Corrections.
  • David Singley: Captain, Spokane Police Department.
  • Lori Melchiori, PhD: Consumer and Family Advocate.
  • Jane Schilling, PhD: Licensed Clinical Psychologist.

Members are appointed for a three-year renewable term and serve independently of DSHS. DSHS is responsible for providing the panel with administrative and financial support.


Contact Information:

For additional information or questions about the PSRP, please contact Lisa Wolph, Program Manager of the Public Safety Review Panel.

Phone: 360-481-2876 or email:

Mailing Address:

Public Safety Review Panel
Department of Social and Health Services
PO Box 45010
Olympia, WA 98504-5021