Man who killed girlfriend just after being served with court papers gets 20 years
A 70-year-old Federal Way man who killed his longtime girlfriend just hours after he was served with an anti-harassment order in 2008 was sentenced Friday to more than 20 years in prison.
Seattle Times staff reporter
A 70-year-old Federal Way man was sentenced Friday to more than 20 years in prison for fatally stabbing his longtime girlfriend shortly after he was served with an anti-harassment order that would have forced him to move out of her house.
King County Superior Court Judge Joan Dubuque was unmoved by the defense attorney's argument that before the murder, Chan "Paul" Kim had no criminal record and that he deserved a sentence that offered hope and rehabilitation.
Dubuque sentenced Kim to a term longer than the 16 years recommended by prosecutors.
Dubuque said the slaying of Baerbel "Babs" Roznowski, 66, was "a particularly brutal and cruel murder" and that Kim, while perhaps not a danger to the community, remained a danger to anyone with whom he became involved.
"The murder that occurred here is a murder that occurs all too often in domestic-violence situations," she said.
Kim pleaded guilty to second-degree domestic-violence murder in January shortly before he was to face trial.
According to Roznowski's daughter, Janet Loh, of Redondo Beach, Calif., her mother was a kind and generous woman who took in stray animals and had a hard time turning away from need.
Loh said her mother had been wanting to break up with Kim, her boyfriend of 16 years, for some time, but had been worried about her own safety and Kim's well-being as well.
Roznowski had retired from her job at UPS several months before her death and wanted to sell her home, move to California and live near her daughters, Loh said.
She postponed the move to nurse Kim through a surgery, Loh said.
After his recovery, however, Kim refused to accept the end of the relationship and move out, Loh said.
A few days before her death, Roznowski sought, and was granted, an anti-harassment order against Kim.
"She believed that was the only way she could get away from him," Loh said.
On May 3, 2008, Federal Way police served Kim with the court order while he and Roznowski were at the residence.
Federal Way police spokeswoman Cathy Schrock said at the time that police were not aware that Roznowski was at home when they served the document.
She said police remained at the home until Kim had left the home.
According to prosecutors, Kim returned a short time later and stabbed Roznowski 18 times before turning the knife on himself.
Police, who were called by a friend of Kim's who heard him making threats, arrived at the home to find Roznowski dying and Kim trying to commit suicide.
Roznowski's daughters have filed a lawsuit against the Federal Way Police Department over its handling of the anti-harassment order.
The lawsuit claims the officer "simply handed the protective order to Kim and drove away, leaving Ms. Roznowski alone in the home with Kim, knowing full well that ... Kim was violent, dangerous and likely to retaliate upon notice of the order."
That lawsuit is still pending, according to Loh.
"The anti-harassment order was supposed to help, and it didn't," said Loh.
Family and friends of Roznowski's who attended the hearing said they were satisfied with the sentence.
"I think Mr. Kim got what he deserved," said Loh.
Christine Clarridge: 206-464-8983 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Information from Seattle Times archives is included in this report.
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