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Bail reduced as Seattle attorney faces new rape charge
King County prosecutors have added an additional rape charge against Seattle attorney Danford Grant, whose bail was reduced from $3 million to $1 million during a hearing Thursday morning.
Seattle Times staff reporter
King County prosecutors have added an additional first-degree-rape charge against jailed Seattle attorney Danford Grant, whose bail was reduced Thursday from $3 million to $1 million.
Grant, 47, is now charged with seven felony counts, including four counts of first-degree rape, for alleged attacks on five women who work at massage-therapy offices in Seattle, Bellevue and Shoreline. Grant is also charged with one count of attempted second-degree rape, one count of first-degree burglary and one count of second-degree rape.
The new charge stems from the alleged rape of a cashier for a Seattle massage therapist in June.
The woman told Seattle police that sometime between June 15 and 20 a man who had been in the business about an hour earlier approached her in the parking lot around 9:30 p.m. and claimed to be a police officer, according to charging paperwork.
The woman, believing the man had a gun, complied with his demand that she sit in the passenger seat of the car. She said that the man drove her car to an area she was unfamiliar with and raped her, according to charges.
The woman didn't immediately report the incident because she was ashamed, charges allege. She told police that she didn't know about Grant's arrest, nor had she seen a photo of him, according to the charges.
When shown a photo montage, the woman immediately picked out a photo of Grant, according to charging paperwork.
Seattle attorney Richard Hansen, who is representing Grant, sought to have Grant's bail reduced to $250,000, but during a hearing Thursday King County Superior Court Judge Mary Yu reduced the amount to $1 million. Hansen said he's hopeful Grant will be released from jail by next week.
Prosecutors opposed lowering Grant's bail.
"The voluminous evidence in this case paints a striking picture of the defendant's compulsive and violent sexual assaults of numerous women in three cities across King County. The defendant is a profound danger to the community and his bail should not be reduced," senior deputy prosecutors Val Richey and Corinn Bohn wrote in their opposition to the bail reduction.
Grant's mother plans to post his bail through assets, including large real-estate holdings in Kansas, according to court filings.
A condition of Grant's release is that he be on electronic-home monitoring. Defense lawyer David Allen, who is also representing Grant, said that he hopes the two sides can come to an agreement on how the monitoring should work without having another court hearing.
In seeking the bail reduction, Grant wrote in court filings that his release would allow him to help in preparing his defense against the charges.
"I very much need to be out of jail to defend against these charges and to help my attorneys work on the case," Grant wrote. "It is awkward and difficult to meet them in jail ... "
Grant wrote that he's only granted an hour a day out of his cell, as well as limited phone use. He also wrote that he's depressed and in need of his therapist and medications.
Grant's mother, Margaret Engelhardt, and his wife, Jennifer, a prosecutor with the Seattle City Attorney's Office, also made pleadings for his bail reduction in court filings.
"As a prosecutor and a woman, I am well aware of the seriousness of the allegations against my husband, but not withstanding that, I know from my interactions with him that Dan takes the charges seriously, and that he will abide by any and all conditions required of him upon his release," Jennifer Grant wrote in her pleading for a bail reduction.
Grant's lawyers say he is not a flight risk because his passport has expired.
Grant was arrested Sept. 24 a couple of blocks from a Greenwood massage clinic after raping a massage therapist, according to charging documents. He allegedly raped the same woman at knife point in a private room on Sept. 19, after paying for a massage, the charges say.
He has also been charged with attacks on message therapists in Shoreline and Bellevue.
Until recently Grant was a law partner at Bailey Grant Onsager, a law firm previously known as Stafford Frey Cooper. Grant's name is no longer listed on the firm's website as being affiliated with the firm. The site notes that papers have been filed with the secretary of state to change the law firm's name to Bailey Onsager.
Officials at Bailey Onsager did not return calls for comment.
Jennifer Sullivan: 206-464-8294 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Information from Seattle Times archives is included in this report