Ex-deputy in domestic violence case pleads guilty to assault

MOUNT VERNON, Wash. (AP) — A former Skagit County sheriff’s deputy charged with domestic violence has pleaded guilty to second-degree assault with a firearm.

The Skagit Valley Herald reports 34-year-old Russell Whitmore pleaded guilty last week, just days before his trial was scheduled to begin.

Court documents say Whitmore choked his wife during an argument, leaving bruises that were visible a week later. He was charged in January with assault, unlawful imprisonment and assault with a weapon in connection with the incident. The other charges were dismissed as part of a plea agreement.

In court Thursday, Whitmore said he has no memory of the incident, but felt he would likely be found guilty if the case went to trial.

Whitmore was fired in March after an internal investigation into his conduct.