- Associated Press - Friday, January 30, 2015

HILLSBORO, Ore. (AP) - A judge ruled late Friday that the co-founder of Dave’s Killer Bread can be treated for bipolar disorder in the community, and need not be committed to the Oregon State Hospital in Salem.

David Dahl, 52, was found guilty except for insanity last year on assault charges related to a police chase and crash in 2013 in Washington County. The court judgment put Dahl in the jurisdiction of the state Psychiatric Security Review Board.

At a disposition hearing, Judge Kirsten Thompson said Dahl must stay on medication, avoid alcohol and continue mental health treatment during his conditional release. He’s also not allowed to drive and his band can’t play at taverns.

Dahl is known as the ex-con who co-founded the Milwaukie bread company with a label that bears his image. The company website says the brand has 13 varieties and is available in about 25 states. It has 280 employees, roughly 30 percent of whom are ex-cons.

Dahl apologized for his actions that occurred during a manic episode. He had been treated for depression shortly before he was released from prison in 2004 and turned to the bread business. He was not diagnosed with bipolar disorder until after he rammed police cars during the November 2013 breakdown.

“I have a new part to my story that I want to tell people about,” Dahl told the court.

Friday’s hearing lasted about five hours as defense attorney Stephen Houze called as witnesses an accident reconstruction expert and a forensic psychologist. Houze attempted to show that the collisions were not as violent as police depicted in their reports and that Dahl was not a danger to society.

Dr. Alexander Millkey testified that Dahl was asymptomatic the last time he examined him. Millkey said Dahl has been seeing a psychiatrist once a week, and it’s his understanding that Dahl is doing well in treatment.

Millkey said Dahl was indeed manic during the November 2013 breakdown. Dahl’s girlfriend recorded him not long before the incident, and Millkey described it as “rambling and strange and disconnected - grandiose.” He added that Dahl had believed himself to be a religious figure during that time period.

Prosecutor Christopher Quinn argued that Dahl has a history of altercations with police and should be sent to the state hospital. But Houze countered that every mental health professional involved in the case recommended otherwise.

He noted that the prosecutor did not have any psychiatrists testify on the state’s behalf: “One must wonder why.”

Dahl, meanwhile, disputed that he has animosity for police.

“I don’t have anything against cops - I just don’t.”

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