Iqaluit Smirnoff party leads to bloody stabbing
Accused admits making up statement to police
Jason Kipanik still bears the scars of one bad night.
Testifying Oct. 27 at the trial of Jayko Kilabuk, Kipanik’s face still bore a six-centimetre scar inflicted March 26, 2010, only the most visible of several permanent reminders on his body.
“His face looked kind of like it was hanging off at the time,” RCMP Constable Lee Ruth, who attended a call to house 415B that night, said in court Oct. 25.
Less obvious, but more serious, was the gash in Kipanik’s belly that cut into his liver and made a medevac to Ottawa necessary to save his life.
“There appeared to be either entrails or the individual’s body far protruding from the abdomen,” said Cst. Paul Glanville, who accompanied Ruth that night.
Kilabuk, 29, at the time of the incident, is on trial for aggravated assault and two breaches of conditions.
After an evening of alcohol and marijuana consumption, there are no clear memories from witnesses to explain exactly how a knife ended up in Kipanik’s face and abdomen.
According to Kilabuk’s statement to police and evidence from Kipanik and his girlfriend, Lalena Flaherty, Kipanik, Kilabuk, Flaherty and Kilabuk’s girlfriend, Napatchie Lyta had been drinking at the Nova Inn that night until one of them was cut off.
They picked up an unopened 40-ounce bottle of Smirnoff vodka from Kipanik and Flaherty’s place and then went to Kilabuk and Lyta’s House 415-B for a few more drinks.
Events at the house aren’t clear, because the only sober witnesses were the babysitter and a friend, who Lyta sent upstairs at the first hint of hostility.
According to the babysitter, 19-year-old Jennifer Nowdlak and her 17-year-old friend Lynn Kisa, Kilabuk and Lyta had a quiet argument about rolling the next joint, and Lyta suddenly exclaimed that Kilabuk bit her.
That upset Kilabuk and Flaherty, who confronted Kilabuk.
The two knew Kilabuk has a long history of criminal violence, including domestic abuse of Lyta.
From upstairs, the two girls could hear the rising voices, the noise of the fight, Kilabuk shouting to “call the cops,” and Flaherty saying “my boyfriend’s been stabbed.”
Police arrived and pulled the two men apart. Then they discovered Kipanik had been stabbed and that Kilabuk’s left eye was beginning to swell up.
Under examination from both Crown and defence lawyers, Kipanik admitted he could not remember what led to the fight.
He said Kilabuk knifed him in the belly when they both sitting on the couch at a time when the women were out having a smoke.
During the fight, both men sliced their fingers and Kipanik’s buzz-cut scalp still carries hairless scars from where he said Kilabuk attempted to stab his head.
Kipanik said he punched Kilabuk repeatedly in an unsuccessful attempt to knock him out.
Kilabuk’s badly swollen eye needed medical attention the next day.
Flaherty’s memory didn’t snap into focus until the fight began.
“I remember being on my knees and telling Jason to hold his stomach in, hold everything in,” she said.
Lyta said the fight began with Kipanik as the aggressor, angry at Kilabuk for his history of domestic violence.
She said Kipanik kicked Kilabuk as Kilabuk was sitting on the couch, and “the next think I remember they were on the floor wrestling.”
She had no idea where the knife came from during the fight, but when Crown prosecutor Susanne Boucher showed her a photo of a bloody knife the police found, Lyta recognized it as a knife she had given Kilabuk.
Under RCMP questioning the day after the attack, Kilabuk gave a detailed story of his defence against Kipanik’s assault, which, he said, resulted in an accidental stabbing when they wrestled on the floor.
He said Kipanik attacked him because of Kilabuk’s history of beating his girlfriend, which Kipanik did not like.
But after more than an hour of questioning Kilabuk admitted he made the whole story up because he couldn’t remember what happened.
The police video of the statement shows Kilabuk repeatedly declining a lawyer when police offer him one.
Kilabuk’s lawyer, Andrew Mahar, is challenging the admissibility of Kilabuk’s statement to police, but Justice Robert Kilpatrick ruled against him and admitted the video as evidence.
A blood-splatter expert will be available in mid-November to discuss forensic evidence, the last witness before Justice Robert Kilpatrick decides on a verdict.
(Comments are closed for this story.)