Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson

May 29 2014

OLYMPIA—Kitsap County Superior Court Judge Jay Roof today ruled in favor of the Attorney General’s Office as it sought to keep a Kitsap County sex predator confined at Washington’s Special Commitment Center for sexually violent predators.

Elmer “Todd” Gillis, 49, was convicted of three sexual offenses between 1983 and 1993, including attempted indecent liberties by forcible compulsion, second degree rape and second degree assault with sexual motivation. He has been continuously confined either at the Special Commitment Center or at the Secure Community Transition Facility on McNeil Island since 1997 when he was civilly committed upon his release from prison.

As allowed under law, Gillis requested an unconditional release into the community. His trial ran from March 31 to April 9 2014 in Kitsap County Superior Court.

Under Washington’s civil commitment law, the Attorney General’s Office was required to demonstrate Gillis suffers from a mental abnormality and/or personality disorder that causes him to have serious difficulty controlling his behavior and makes him likely to engage in predatory acts of sexual violence if not confined to a secure facility.

The judge ruled he met the criteria of a sexually violent predator and ordered his continued confinement at the Special Commitment Center.

“The people of Washington deserve to be protected from sexually violent predators,” Ferguson said. “As a father and a husband, I’m pleased Mr. Gillis will remain confined and out of our communities.”

In 1990, Washington became the first state in the nation to pass a law permitting the involuntary civil commitment of sex offenders. The AGO’s SVP Unit was established shortly thereafter.

The AGO SVP Unit is responsible for prosecuting sex predator cases for 38 of Washington’s 39 counties (King County being the exception). In Fiscal Year 2013, the unit tried 19 cases, won 16 civil commitments and secured one recommitment. One trial ended in a hung jury and one offender was found by a jury not to meet criteria to be committed as a sexually violent predator.

As of March 2014, approximately 296 sexually violent predators are in the state’s Special Commitment Program.


The Office of the Attorney General is the chief legal office for the state of Washington with attorneys and staff in 27 divisions across the state providing legal services to roughly 200 state agencies, boards and commissions. Attorney General Bob Ferguson is working hard to protect consumers and seniors against fraud, keep our communities safe, protect our environment and stand up for our veterans. Visit www.atg.wa.gov to learn more.

•    Janelle Guthrie, Director of Communications, (360) 586-0725
•    Alison Dempsey-Hall, Deputy Communications Director, (206) 641-1335