Darren McCarty gets protection order

Updated: June 6, 2012, 11:39 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

PONTIAC, Mich. -- Court records show retired NHL player Darren McCarty and his wife got personal protection orders against four former friends in suburban Detroit.

The Detroit News reported Wednesday that the veteran of 15 NHL seasons who won four Stanley Cups with the Red Wings claims harassment by the three women and one man. McCarty and his wife, Sheryl, say in court papers the four tried to draw McCarty back into a partying lifestyle.

[+] EnlargeDarren McCarty
Luc Leclerc/US PresswireDarren McCarty played 13 seasons with the Red Wings, helping Detroit win four Stanley Cups.

McCarty now works for the Detroit Red Wings Alumni Association. In their complaint, the McCartys allege the four former friends have tried to get them fired from their jobs, sent them threatening text messages and phone calls, and posted spiteful messages on websites about them.

McCarty says the harassment has included death threats. The orders were granted last month in an Oakland County court.

"All we want is to be left alone," McCarty told the newspaper. "I ignored some of the things they were doing and was willing to let it go, until they started threatening my wife and me. Death threats.

"They don't like me because I'm not running around with them anymore, and they don't like her because we got married and just want to get on with our lives."

The McCartys were married earlier this year.

Protection orders were issued to McCarty and his wife against Tonya Juhl, 37; Kimberley Mitchell, 38; Anne Marie Samulski, 22; and Louis Barbato, 40.

The News, citing court records, reported that Juhl and Samulski dated McCarty from December 2009 until March 2010, unaware at the time that both were seeing him at the same time.

Sheryl McCarty, a nurse, described the four former friends as "delusional, obsessed hockey fans."

"We like all the real fans, but these people don't love Darren, they love No. 25," she told the newspaper. "And when they no longer had him around, they got mad."

The newspaper reported that in a letter to the court, Sheryl McCarty wrote that her husband, who went through alcohol rehab in the 1990s, fell back into a partying lifestyle after he retired in 2009.

"Darren started partying and surrounded himself with bad people due to the choices he was making. ... Louis Barbato, Kimberly Mitchell, Tonya Juhl and Anne Marie Samulski are four of those people," she wrote, according to the newspaper.

Mitchell denied the claims, but she couldn't comment further because of the orders.

"I can't say anything because of the personal protection order," she told the newspaper. "What they say is totally false, and I have a lot more to say, but I don't want to go to jail."

McCarty spent 13 seasons with the Red Wings. In his 15-season career he appeared in 758 career games, recording 127 goals and 1,477 penalty minutes. He scored the Cup-winning goal in the 1997 finals against Philadelphia to end Detroit's 42-year title drought. He also helped the Red Wings hoist the Cup in 1998, 2002 and '08.

McCarty, who embraced the enforcer's role in Hockeytown and became a fan favorite, had his best season in the 1996-97 Cup-winning campaign, scoring 19 goals to go with 30 assists.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.