Morrison enters not guilty plea

Robert James Morrison on Thursday entered a plea of not guilty to all charges during a brief arraignment at the Norm Maleng Justice Center in Kent.

Robert James Morrison entered a plea of not guilty to all charges during his arraignment on Sept. 8.

Robert James Morrison on Thursday entered a plea of not guilty to all charges during a brief arraignment at the Norm Maleng Justice Center in Kent.

Morrison, the owner of Lee’s Martial Arts studio in Renton and Maple Valley, is charged with three counts of rape of a child in the third degree one count of communicating with a minor for immoral purposes, stemming from statements made by former students, one of whom allegedly began a relationship with him when she was 14 that eventually progressed to sex. He also allegedly sent nude photos of himself to three other students.

Morrison is currently out on bail and appeared in court Thursday surrounded by family and supporters.

State prosecutor Joel Merkel requested five separate sexual assault protection orders and a no-contact order with all minors.

Morrison’s attorney, Philip Thornton of Tacoma, requested a change to supervised contact with minors because though Morrison has stepped away from the school, Thornton argued that as owner, he may need to visit the building, which could include the possibility of being around minors.

Merkel countered that because the school is where Morrison is alleged to have met his victims and said the circumstances described by Thornton were precisely what the state was concerned about.

Judge Bill A. Bowman ultimately determined that Morrison could be at the school if supervised by someone who knew about the case, according to Thronton.

Following the arraignment, Morrison left the courtroom with his supporters, who circled him and protected him from television cameras as they entered the elevator. Neither he nor Thornton made any statements or comments to the press.

Morrison is innocent until proven guilty.

More in News

Exit poll indicates Washington voters still support climate change action

State environmental organizations’ poll points to continuing support for carbon-reducing measures.

Attendees gather after the Dec. 21, 2018, meeting at Seattle’s Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center.
Washington indigenous communities push for action to address violence against women

A new law seeks to strength data collection on missing and murdered indigenous women.

Voter registration deadline Jan. 14 for Special Election

The special election includes Renton School District ballot measures

Charles Pillon sits inside one of the several buses on Iron Mountain. Photo by Caean Couto
                                <em>Photo originally published <a href="http://www.rentonreporter.com/news/the-last-days-of-iron-mountain/" target="_blank">here</a></em>
Federal lawsuit filed to finish cleanup of Iron Mountain

The EPA has filed a lawsuit to extend their cleanup warrant after the owner denied further access

Construction closes Coulon deck, and more community news

Film screening coming to Renton Library The Renton Library will be hosting… Continue reading

A clip of the Renton Reporter when Law was leading votes for the mayoral election in 2007. Law is now serving his third, and final, term as mayor.
Mayor prepares for final months in office

Mayor Law said he will focus on seniors, public safety and the Family First Community Center

Renton toddlers graduate Kindering, and more community news…

Nominate an outstanding Renton woman The Renton Business & Professional Women Organization… Continue reading

Wikimedia Commons CFCF photo
Proposed law would raise age limit for tobacco sales in WA

Lawmakers cite health concerns over tobacco and vape products

File photo
Seattle area braces for three-week SR 99 closure

Expect more congestion, longer commutes

Most Read