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Wednesday, October 21, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Ex-deputy who accused former King County sheriff of groping countersues

Associated Press

SEATTLE – An ex-deputy who accused former King County Sheriff John Urquhart of groping him in a Renton parking lot four years ago has filed a countersuit as part of a formal response to Urquhart’s pending defamation lawsuit against him.

The Seattle Times reported Thursday that Brian Barnes, in an answer and counterclaim filed in King County Superior Court, contends his groping accusation against Urquhart is true.

He also claims the former sheriff defamed him by publicly describing the allegation as a malicious, politically motivated lie, as well as by labeling Barnes an “organizational terrorist” who habitually files false claims against supervisors.

Barnes’ filing asks the court for a judgment against Urquhart and to award compensation for damages to be proved at trial.

Urquhart’s lawsuit claims Barnes concocted the groping claims “for the purpose of causing substantial and irreparable harm” to derail the then-sheriff’s re-election bid.

Lawyers for Urquhart and Barnes didn’t respond to requests for comment.

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