- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 20, 2011

A sergeant in the Metropolitan Police Department was sentenced to four years in jail for drunkenly threatening a friend with a handgun, Prince George’s County prosecutors announced Thursday.

Christopher Whitehouse, 51, pleaded guilty to second-degree assault from an incident in March when he pointed a handgun at a friend’s head during an argument at her Cheverly home. On Wednesday, Prince George’s County Circuit Court Judge Michael Whalen sentenced Whitehouse to jail time well outside the sentencing guidelines for the case, which range from probation to two years in jail, Whitehouse’s attorney said.

“Christopher Whitehouse has stated on numerous occasions and demonstrated by his behavior since the incident that he recognizes he is an alcoholic,” attorney Jonathan Shoup said. “At the time of sentencing, he was involved in four separate rehabilitaion programs.”

On the day of the incident, Whitehouse was helping the friend unload groceries in her home when she asked him about a negative comment she thought he previously made about her, making him angry.

According to the charging documents, Whitehouse unholstered a handgun, grabbed the woman around her neck and pointed the weapon underneath her chin. “How do you like this bitch?” Whitehouse purportedly said to her, the records state. Whitehouse put the gun away when the woman’s boyfriend came into the room.

On his way out of the house, Whitehouse hugged the woman and said, “I hope everything is OK, but you smell good, too,” and then took some beer from her refrigerator before leaving, court documents state.

Whitehouse, of Beltsville, has been suspended from MPD without pay, Mr. Shoup said. An MPD spokesperson could not be reached Thursday to confirm Whitehouse’s status with the department.

Whitehouse was previously demoted in the department for a 2002 incident, in which he pulled a man over while off-duty and intoxicated and was accused of threatening the driver with a gun. After a four-day trial, a Montgomery County jury found Whitehouse guilty of only driving while ability impaired in that incident.

• Andrea Noble can be reached at anoble@washingtontimes.com.

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