Local News

Woman accuses fired trooper of assault

Posted March 7, 2009 11:33 a.m. EST
Updated March 7, 2009 3:45 p.m. EST

— A former state trooper fighting to get his job back was accused by a woman of misdemeanor assault with a deadly weapon in early February.

The woman swore out a warrant against Monty Poarch, 46, after an incident in the parking lot of an Asheville restaurant. The woman said that she was saving a parking space for her friend and that Poarch used his car to force her out of the space and park in it.

Asheville police investigated the incident and did not file charges. Five days later, the woman went to the magistrate's office and obtained a warrant for assault.

The Caldwell County Sheriff's Office, in which Poarch serves as a captain, is standing by its employee.

"Captain Poarch cooperated fully with the investigation, and the responding officers found that no crime had been committed," Detective B.J. Fore, a public-information officer, said in a statement.

Officials with the sheriff's office said that they believe the incident has been blown out of portion and that Poarch quickly followed department procedure for reporting the incident.

Poarch, then an 18-year veteran of the state Highway Patrol, was fired in 2003. He admitted to having sex in a patrol car and inside his trooper station during an extramarital affair. He denied charges by internal investigators that the sex occurred while he was on duty.

In September 2007, an administrative-law judge ruled that Poarch should get his job back because other troopers weren't punished as severely for similar offenses. In February 2008, though, the State Personnel Commission rejected the recommendation to reinstate Poarch.

Poarch has appealed the decision in courts, and his case is likely to be heard by the State Supreme Court.