Man acquitted of assault in head-butting incident

Rosie Mullaley
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A man accused of head butting another man in the washroom of a downtown bar has been found not guilty of assault causing bodily harm.

Kevin Michael Stamp is pictured in provincial court in St. John's today. — Photo by Rosie Gillingham/The Telegram

The verdict was rendered this morning in the case of Kevin Michael Stamp in provincial court in St. John’s.

Stamp shook hands with his lawyer, Randy Piercey, before he left the courtroom.

The 25-year-old was charged following an incident that happened Nov. 17, 2012, at Shamrock City on Water Street.

Testifying in the trial a few weeks ago, the complainant said he was in the washroom when Stamp walked in, suddenly grabbed him by the shoulders and head-butted him.

He suffered a broken nose and a head laceration that required eight stitches to close.

He said he had never met Stamp before and couldn’t understand why he did it.

Stamp said he had every reason to do what he did. He testified that the man sexually assaulted him and that he head-butted him in retaliation and self-defence.

Piercey had argued that the amount of force Stamp used was necessary under the circumstances and that the head-butt was an understandable reaction to being sexually assaulted.

Crown prosecutor Danny Vavasour suggested Stamp fabricated the story about being sexually assaulted. And if the man did sexually assault him, Vavasour argued, head-butting was excessive.

But Judge Pamela Goulding said there was an air of reality to Stamp’s version.

She said she found it difficult to believe that Stamp assaulted a stranger for no reason.

“That would have been highly unusual and bizarre,” she said.

She agreed that Stamp was in such close proximity to the man, that the reaction was understandable.

She agreed with Piercey that Stamp could not have been expected to have measured the nicety of the force he was using in response.

She said she accepted Stamp’s explanation that he didn’t contact police after eight attempts by the officers because it was a busy time if year. Stamp had said he did make his best efforts

Twitter: TelyCourt

Geographic location: Shamrock, Water Street

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Recent comments

  • Clayton
    February 11, 2014 - 12:07

    Is this the usual where the media does not report the name of the complainant while the innocent's name has been plastered all over the media? Especially what appears to be a sexual assault. Was the complainant a local guy? I think it is the public's right to know. Obviously the media is only reporting half the storey as usual.

  • @Tolerance
    February 01, 2014 - 19:37

    If you think someone should talk themselves out of a sexual assault, you got rocks in your head. Would you say the same if it were a female and she knifed the person assaulting her?? Give your head a shake for god sakes. I'd do the same thing Mr. Stamp did. ...... or more

  • Mike Connors
    January 31, 2014 - 17:50

    It is quite sad that Justice may be blind in Newfoundland but it apparently is homophobic . I was assaulted in a wash-room by 2 gentlemen that decided that they needed to teach a gay guy a lesson. Thankfully the Judge did not allow the "gay panic" defence that this Judge was so quick to accept. As long as Judges allow this defence, LGBT person will continue to be injured and killed. This Judge should be removed before she inflicts more harm.

  • Amanda
    January 31, 2014 - 13:31

    May I just say that I know Stamp and I have to say that he is a very calm and easy going fellow. It would not be within his character to do something like this for no reason.

  • Robert
    January 31, 2014 - 13:11

    I agree with Amazing. Just imagine if a women got assault while walking one of the local trails. You think if she headbutt him it would be consider excessive? I don't think so. Everyone would be congratulating her, including me.

    January 31, 2014 - 11:55

    I amazed by this line in the article... "Crown prosecutor Danny Vavasour suggested Stamp fabricated the story about being sexually assaulted. And if the man did sexually assault him, Vavasour argued, head-butting was excessive." This is the first time I have ever heard it suggested that striking someone (in any way)while they are sexually assaulting you is excessive. Since I was a child, I was taught that if someone is sexually touching you in an unwanted way or trying to rape you, you have every right to fight to defend and protect yourself by any means necessary.

  • Tolerance
    January 31, 2014 - 11:32

    STAMP could have talked before he acted like that. It shows that he is very aggressive. He should be in other countries where people have more tolerance and understanding; regardless of the situation. He is far from perfect himself. Maybe he did learn a lesson now.

  • Brett
    January 31, 2014 - 10:35

    Maybe it's just the shortened article but this thing seems like its got a whole lot of holes in it. Now I don't think that prison time and everything needs to be laid out because of a scuffle, but I thought an earlier article said that Stamp had turned around and gone in to the bathroom after the sexual assault had happened. Meaning that the excuse the headbutt in the bathroom occurred due to lack of space is not in following that there were no other options. That the assault had nothing to do with being reactionary to any groping or words said, but happened afterwards.

  • Jay
    January 31, 2014 - 10:31

    It's becoming more and more obvious that the justice system is in such a mess because the judges are just plain stupid. Does this judge actually live on this planet to believe such a story? People often get assaulted on George Street for no reason and the sexual assault defence is as old as they come, and just as unbelievable.

    • Bert
      January 31, 2014 - 21:42

      I wasn't there and you weren't there either so only two people know what really happened. In such incidents it's very hard to charge Stamp with assault.