Matthew Cory, 33, was back behind bars Friday on charges he assaulted a hiker in Everett, coming up behind her as she rested and choking her, local outlet Q13 Fox reported.
The victim, in her 60s, managed to loosen Cory’s grip and scream loud enough that he took off, according to court documents obtained by the outlet.
Police found Cory running through the woods, and the woman identified him as her assailant.
The alleged attack occurred after Cory was released from jail on May 2, ahead of schedule, because of the virus outbreak. He had been locked up for unlawful possession of a firearm.
Authorities said they lost track of Cory because he removed his ankle monitor after being freed.
Cory told investigators he’d been using meth for two weeks, hadn’t slept in seven days and didn’t remember attacking the woman, according to the court documents.
He has a long rap sheet that includes 11 arrests, seven felony convictions and two misdemeanors.
Cory was one of one of about 1,000 Washington State inmates released up to six months early because of the pandemic.
“The decision to release individuals from DOC was based on weighing the risk to incarcerated individuals and public safety,” Gov. Jay Inslee’s office said in a statement to the outlet.
“This group was chosen to reduce the risk to public safety, but no choice could be made to guarantee that there would never be a new crime committed.”