Penticton man jailed for assault on neighbour

Kevin Woods sentenced to 45 days, to be served on weekends, followed by one year of probation

A Penticton man found guilty of assault said he has only two regrets and neither of them are injuring his neighbour.

Kevin Kenneth Woods was sentenced to 45 days, to be served on weekends, followed by a year-long probation for assault with a weapon and possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose. The charges stem from an altercation that took place on July 13, 2011 with his neighbour at 130 Skaha Place.

“The pre-sentence report says I am supposed to be sorry. I am just not for those reasons,” said Woods. “I’m not sure what I did wrong. I didn’t want somebody to hurt me.”

Despite being the one that assaulted Kenny Robertson with a foot-long piece of rebar in the hallway of the apartment building, leaving him with bruises and a stab wound, Woods felt he was the victim in the situation. He said he got agitated when he heard Robertson banging on doors in the hallway, and opened his apartment door to see what was going on.

Robertson testified he was intoxicated that day and was unsure of what sparked the assault. He said there was a scuffle and he fell on the knife while fighting on the ground with Woods and then was hit several times in the body with the rebar.

Woods admitted he had a piece of rebar by the door because of recent disturbances in the apartment hallways that left him scared. He said he came out of his apartment with the rebar in his hand when Robertson came after him with a knife.

In the pre-sentence report, Woods said the two regrets he had were opening his door in the first place, and that he should have just let Robertson hurt him, instead of pursuing him and then being charged himself.

Judge Meg Shaw said she was left with “reasonable doubt” who exactly was in possession of a knife when Woods “aggressively” confronted Robertson. She also questioned why Woods decided to go after Robertson with the rebar when he could have simply retreated back inside his apartment and called RCMP.

Shaw decided on the sentence after hearing that Woods had no incentive to attend counselling for anger management or other issues if given jail time.

She also took into account that Woods had abided by his bail conditions since he was charged and had not been in trouble since previous convictions for manslaughter (1996), fraud (2004) and uttering threats (2005). Woods also had several references from acquaintances that noted his calm disposition and willingness to help others.

Defence counsel Andrew Vandersluys told the court that Woods collects a disability cheque and putting him behind bars would mean he would no longer receive that and put a hardship on his roommate.

“Despite his record, he has maintained being a good citizen for a long period of time and I want him to continue that conduct of being a productive, meaningful member of the community,” said Shaw in her decision.

Crown counsel Catherine Crockett had asked for jail time of three to six months because of his attitude towards the offence and agreed he needs some form of rehabilitation and counselling.