SEATTLE -- Former King County SWAT Deputy Darrion Holiwell recently stood before a King County judge and pled guilty to promoting prostitution, selling steroids and stealing ammunition from the police gun range. "I apologize to this court. I have embarrassed myself, my family and my department. I am truly sorry for my actions," Holiwell said, before receiving a sentence of 366 days in prison.
Judge Heller called Holiwell a "disgrace" to his profession, but agreed to waive Holiwell's financial penalties amounting to several thousand dollars in fines and court costs because Holiwell claimed he was indigent and had virtually no financial resources.
Now the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office is alleging Holiwell lied to the judge. Senior Deputy Prosecutor Gary Ernsdorff filed a motion Monday requesting that Judge Heller vacate the sentence and set a new hearing. Ernsdorff stated that about three weeks before his sentencing on August 4, Holiwell secretly requested a withdrawal of $181,685 from his retirement account. The prosecutor is not alleging Holiwell committed a new crime, but that he may have committed a fraud on the court. The judge could decide to set aside the previous sentence and impose more prison time, higher fines or both.
Before his arrest, Holiwell, 49, was the chief firearms instructor for the King County Sheriff's Office, a nationally recognized weapons expert and owner of a private firearms training school. He came under investigation in April after information came to the attention of his department that he was helping his estranged wife sell sex on BackPage.com by providing advice and assisting with security. Holiwell also collected about 80 percent of her earnings, the estranged wife told investigators.
Holiwell's case scandalized his department but shortly after his sentencing Ernsdorff insisted that Holiwell did not get a break because he was a cop. "I think this (sentence) is holding a police officer more accountable than a regular citizen. Each of these charges might have gone to a drug court or diversion program, but when you package them all up you have a police officer going to prison," Ernsdorff said.