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This profile was last updated on 10/7/13  and contains information from public web pages.

Court Commissioner

Yakima County
 
Background

Employment History

  • Juvenile Court Commissioner
    Yakima County
  • Commissioner
28 Total References
Web References
Yakima County Court Commissioner ...
www.yakimaherald.com, 7 Oct 2013 [cached]
Yakima County Court Commissioner Robert Inouye applauds as a defendant in the county's mental health court comments on being sober for a week or more following a stay in jail.
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Inouye commended the man, who had been jailed for a week, for recently meeting with his mental health team and resuming his medication.
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Each Tuesday morning, Inouye presides over mental health court. He decided to give the man in his 30s another chance and arranged for him to get care in an inpatient facility.
"Our goal isn't to throw them out," Inouye said after the hearing.
Robert Inouye, Yakima ...
www.yakimaherald.com, 23 May 2009 [cached]
Robert Inouye, Yakima County's juvenile court commissioner, welcomes the option of sending certain children to Two Rivers. There are plans to hold involuntary treatment hearings at the facility -- away from the detention facility on Jerome Avenue -- which he said will minimize disruption to children and their families.
"You're dealing with a fragile population and you don't want to start any more problems than you need," Inouye said.
CASA Profiles : The CASA Comment
www.casacomment.com, 16 May 2011 [cached]
Washington State CASA is honored to present Yakima County Superior Court Commissioner Robert Inouye with the 2010 David W. Soukup Speak up for a Child Award.
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What greatly qualifies Commissioner Bob Inouye for the Soukup Award though is the respect he shows CASA volunteers and staff Guardians Ad Litem.
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Volunteers know that in the midst of their nervousness or hesitancy, Commissioner Inouye will try to guide them through the process at hand and will interact with them in a patient and attentive manner. We are very grateful to have Commissioner Bob Inouye as our "Judicial Officer" and know that the well being of children will always be uppermost in his mind as he leads us all in this crucial work.
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Using this definition, Commissioner Inouye is a hero. He is a true public servant. His constituency is made up of the most vulnerable of all our citizens; children who have been harmed or neglected at the hands of those in whom they have placed unconditional trust and dependence."
Yakima County Court Commissioner ...
www.yakimaherald.com, 7 Oct 2013 [cached]
Yakima County Court Commissioner Robert Inouye applauds as a defendant in the county's mental health court comment on being sober for a week or more following a stay in jail.
...
Inouye commended the man, who had been jailed for a week, for recently meeting with his mental health team and resuming his medication.
...
Each Tuesday morning, Inouye presides over mental health court. He decided to give the man in his 30s another chance and arranged for him to get care in an inpatient facility.
"Our goal isn't to throw them out," Inouye said after the hearing.
Yakima County Juvenile Court Commissioner ...
www.yakima-herald.com, 19 Feb 2008 [cached]
Yakima County Juvenile Court Commissioner Robert Inouye dons his robe as prepares to preside over another day of juvenile court.
GORDON KING/Yakima Herald-RepublicYakima County Juvenile Court Commissioner Robert Inouye works in his chambers before presiding over court one day in January.Inouye says he's exhausts all alternatives before sentencing chronic runaways to serve time in the county's juvenile detention center.
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Maria Ochoa was a 15-year-old chronic runaway in foster care when Robert Inouye, Yakima County's juvenile court commissioner, took the unusual step of sentencing her to jail for a total of three months.
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Inouye gave her 30 days in the juvenile-only detention center on Jerome Avenue, where runaways are in cells adjacent to juveniles with serious criminal records.
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Back before Inouye, she found herself with a 60-day sentence and the threat that he might lock her up until she turned 18.
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They argued that Inouye exceeded his authority and failed to pursue less restrictive alternatives, such as ordering social workers to provide more mental health services.
The public defenders lost at the state Court of Appeals.They appealed to the state Supreme Court in Olympia, where they were joined by a host of state and national children's advocacy groups.
In a December decision that drew national attention, a majority of the justices ruled that Inouye had improperly incarcerated troubled youth before exhausting less severe alternatives.
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Briefs filed in the case suggest that the 56-year-old Inouye is a heartless judge who doesn't understand the social pathology of troubled kids in foster care.
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But Inouye said the recent Supreme Court ruling reflects an "ivory tower" mentality toward the problem of chronic foster-care runaways."My reaction was that they didn't have enough information on the ground about real situations and what kind of interventions sometimes are needed to help kids turn around," he said.
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Inouye, whose wife is a psychotherapist, said he is a big believer in mental health services."But in extreme cases, I can't get those services going because (the children) are making their decision to (run away)," he said.
The deeper issue, Inouye said, is the state Legislature's failure to fund secure inpatient treatment facilities for children with drug and mental health issues.The Legislature authorized judges to lock up kids for inpatient treatment but never appropriated money to pay for the facilities, Inouye said.
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Sonia Rodriguez, the public defender who represented Ochoa and the other girls jailed by Inouye, agrees that the state hasn't provided adequate resources to help.
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But Nichols disagrees that the state -- or Commissioner Inouye -- is overusing it, arguing that Inouye has made sure detention is employed only as a last resort."I think (Inouye) has a great deal of patience," Nichols said.
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But Inouye doesn't like that idea.Criminal contempt, he said, is a long process that wouldn't help a minor in a crisis.Plus, a conviction would stigmatize the child."I don't like the idea of criminalizing kids," Inouye said.
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