Maximum sentence imposed on ex-cop for domestic violence

Dennis McCarthy is escorted to his sentencing hearing Thursday afternoon in Kitsap County Superior Court. - Brett Cihon/Staff photo
Dennis McCarthy is escorted to his sentencing hearing Thursday afternoon in Kitsap County Superior Court.
— image credit: Brett Cihon/Staff photo

Ex-cop Dennis McCarthy was sentenced Thursday to more than 23 years in prison for assaulting his live-in girlfriend, whom he threatened with a gun and then pushed out a second-story window after a fight in his Olalla home a year and a half ago.

Judge Theodore Spearman listened to emotional testimony from the wheelchair-bound victim before he imposed the maximum sentence on McCarthy, a former Port Orchard police officer and Kitsap County Sheriff's deputy, for his convictions on charges of first- and second-degree assault.

Defense attorney Tim Kelly, in asking the judge to impose a sentence at the low end of the range, said McCarthy would not address the court Thursday because he is appealing his convictions and will seek a new trial.

Kelly portrayed the assault that took place May 2, 2010, as "a moment in time" that was not characteristic of McCarthy, who "has basically given most of his adult life to serving people" in his honorable law enforcement career.

But the victim spoke at length about the physical, mental and emotional abuse she endured since 2008 in her relationship with McCarthy, who she's known since childhood when they both lived in New York City, where her father was a career police officer.

The victim began her comments by expressing gratitude to the jury that convicted McCarthy last week.

"McCarthy always said no one would believe me," the woman said. "Thank God someone did."

She described intimidation and harassment from some of McCarthy's fellow officers, who she claimed pressured her to drop charges against him stemming from a domestic abuse incident in November 2008.

That incident led to a no-contact order that McCarthy violated by calling the woman repeatedly, and three years was added to his sentence as a result.

At the conclusion of her testimony Thursday, the tearful woman pleaded with the judge to impose the maximum sentence.

"The only thing you can give me," she said, "is the freedom to know for the rest of my life that I don't have to fear him."


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