Staten Island

Ex-Teacher Sentenced in Killing of Retired NYPD Cop Boyfriend

The two had been together on and off for about six years

A former teacher convicted of gunning down her boyfriend has been sentenced to 30 years in state prison.

The sentence for Virginia Vertetis was handed down Tuesday after a judge rejected her lawyers' request to overturn the verdict and order a new trial.

Morris County prosecutors had sought a 50-year term for the 55-year-old Mount Olive resident. The judge said Vertetis has not accepted responsibility for the 2014 death of retired New York City police officer Patrick Gilhuley, but cited her age as part of his decision to impose a lesser sentence.

During the four-week trial, Vertetis testified she shot 51-year-old Patrick Gilhuley in her Mount Olive home in 2014 because she thought he was going to kill her. Her lawyer claimed Gilhuley was drunk and attacked her because he thought she was going to report him to the Internal Revenue Service for not paying some of his taxes.

Prosecutors, meanwhile, contended Vertetis was distraught that Gilhuley was breaking up with her when she purposely shot him. The two had been together on and off for about six years.

During deliberations, the jury asked to have the testimony of Gilhuley's daughter, Jennifer, read back. She had testified her father called her from his cellphone just before he was shot.

Patrick Gilhuley joined the NYPD in 1983 and worked in its housing division in Brooklyn and Staten Island. He and his partner were honored in 1993 after they interrupted a shootout and arrested four armed men in Staten Island, reported at the time of his death.

He retired in 2003 and worked for a private investigation agency.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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