Seth Carey vows to stay in DA race despite protection order against him

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AUBURN — Despite a judicial order forcing him to stay away from a woman who accused him of sexual abuse, Auburn lawyer Seth Carey said Monday he still hopes to win election as the district attorney for Androscoggin, Franklin and Oxford counties.

In a news conference on the steps of the Androscoggin County Courthouse, Carey vowed to deploy the power of the office to pursue people who file false claims.

He said women such as the one who successfully convinced a Rumford judge to issue a restraining order against him last week ought to be behind bars for lying.

Carey, 42, took issue with the Rumford court’s refusal to allow him to introduce evidence that his accuser had a history of filing for protective orders and abusing the legal system. He said he will file an appeal this week in a bid to overturn the decision.

To secure the chance to take on the current district attorney, Democrat Andrew Robinson, Carey first has to win a June 12 primary against Alexander Willette, 29, of Lewiston.

The chairwoman of the Maine GOP, Demi Kouzounas, issued a statement last week calling on Carey to quit the race in the face of “actual, credible accusations” of misconduct. She said residents of the three counties “should not have a cloud of doubt hovering their heads.”

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Carey said, though, that he has no intention of getting out of the race.

“Voters should also not live in a justice system where people can be falsely accused and that’s just OK,” he said.

Carey said he wound up in a hot water because he mistakenly thought a woman he connected with on Tinder was as great as she seemed. He ultimately let her live in a room in his Rumford home.

In her affidavit in support of the order she sought, the woman — whose identity is being withheld — claimed she had “to put a padlock on my bedroom door to keep him from coming into my room at night” and accused Carey of sexually assaulting her in his living room.

Carey, who insisted he is innocent, has been ordered to stay away from his home until May 1 to give the woman time to find a new place to live.

Carey said he knows there are many real problems with men abusing woman — he hailed the #MeToo movement — but he cautioned that some charges are not true.

“I’m here to speak for all victims,” Carey said. The only thing he is guilty of, he said, is possessing “a kind heart.”

“I tried help this woman,” he said, “and now I’m out of a home.”

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