Debra Stephens

OLYMPIA, Wash. (Legal Newsline)-Washington state Supreme Court Justice Debra Stephens' opponent in the Aug. 19 primary has withdrawn from the race, leaving the court appointee to coast to a full term on the high court.

Tacoma attorney and former Pierce County public defender Jack Hill withdrew on Wednesday, less than a week after he filed to run for the high court.

"I guess I came to the conclusion that I was a little fast in filing. I have satisfied myself that Justice Stephens is the better candidate, and I feel good about her candidacy," Hill said in a statement.

Stephens, a former Spokane judge, was appointed earlier this year to fill the seat vacated by retiring Justice Bobbe Bridge.

In the other two state Supreme Court primary races in the Evergreen State, Justice Mary Fairhurst of Olympia will face off with Seattle attorney Michael Bond.

Also, Associate Chief Justice Charles Johnson will face C.F. "Frank" Vulliet of Mercer Island and James M. Beecher of Seattle in the primary.

From Legal Newsline: Reach reporter Chris Rizo by e-mail at

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