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Psychological exam ordered for teen accused of attacking deputy

James Washington

James Washington

LAWRENCEVILLE -- A judge on Tuesday ordered a psychological evaluation for a Gwinnett teen with a track record of mental illness who's accused of attacking a jail deputy last week.

Gwinnett Superior Court Judge Warren Davis continued a previously scheduled bond revocation hearing for James Washington, 18, until the examination is complete.

The purpose of the hearing was to determine if Washington willfully violated probation when he was arrested May 10 in a separate case charging him with criminal damage to property, second-degree.

Washington, heavily shackled and flanked by six deputies who eyed his every twitch, objected to the evaluation and wished to proceed with the hearing Tuesday, his defense attorney said.

Davis ruled the hearing will be reset only when the evaluation is finished.

A worker with GRN mental health facility testified earlier that Washington suffers from schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and has been enrolled in a program for high-risk adolescents.

Jailed since May, Washington was moved to a maximum security pod last week after he reportedly attacked 47-year-old Sheriff's Department Deputy William Lamb, who was hospitalized.

Authorities said Washington struck the deputy and pounded his head in a concrete floor until two other inmates pulled him off.

Lamb, a four-year veteran, has since returned to work at the jail and is "doing well," Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Stacey Bourbonnais said Tuesday.

Washington faces additional charges of aggravated assault and felony obstruction of a law enforcement officer in the alleged attack.

Authorities have not elaborated as to what Washington's motive may have been. The inmate-deputy clash was the second serious incident reported at the jail since 2003.

Washington was most recently jailed for an alleged tirade at a Lawrenceville home where he smashed furniture and a car's windshield. That arrest violated terms of probation stemming from an aggravated assault charge in September, when he was arrested in Snellville for chasing someone with a knife.

Tuesday's hearing wasn't the first time Washington appeared before Davis.

Upon Washington's April release from jail, Davis had ordered him to complete an anger management program and mental health counseling with medication as prescribed.