Charlestown detective facing domestic violence charges

South County

WESTERLY, R.I. (WPRI) — A Charlestown police detective has been placed on administrative leave after he reportedly shoved his already injured wife over the weekend, according to Westerly Police Chief Shawn Lacey.

Lacey said officers responded to Kevin Ryan’s Cross Street home Sunday night after receiving a call about a disturbance.

Upon their arrival, Lacey said Ryan was nowhere to be found. Officers spoke with his wife, who claimed Ryan took off in his pickup truck right before they showed up.

Ryan’s wife told the officers she has been recovering from a broken rib for the past several days, according to Lacey.

His wife said the altercation occurred after Ryan returned home from work. She claimed he had been drinking alcohol and began yelling at her after she had asked him for help with something, according to Lacey.

The argument continued as Ryan’s wife followed him out of the house. At that point, Lacey said he yelled obscenities at her and shoved her, hitting her in the area of her already broken rib.

Lacey said after that, Ryan went back inside and started yelling at their 19-year-old daughter, who lives with them.

Ryan then left the residence. Officers initially believed Ryan was heading for the Westerly Yacht Club, but Lacey said they ultimately couldn’t find him.

Later that night, Lacey said the Charlestown Police Department got in touch with Ryan and convinced him to turn himself in.

Ryan is charged with domestic assault and domestic disorderly conduct. Charlestown Police Chief Michael Paliotta tells 12 News Ryan has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of Westerly’s investigation.

In response to the incident, R.I. Coalition Against Domestic Violence Executive Director Tonya King urged the Charlestown Police Department to punish Ryan accordingly.

“We must support survivors of domestic abuse at the hands of police officers by holding abusers accountable and taking these cases seriously,” King said. “We believe Rhode Island police departments should have zero tolerance for officers who commit crimes of violence. Individuals who commit crimes of abuse against their partners should not be allowed to enforce the laws meant to prevent violence in our communities.”

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