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Man pleads not guilty in Kentville courthouse incident

Deputy sheriffs help Darrin Rouse flush his eyes after he was sprayed with a sensory irritant during a scuffle with deputies at Kentville Supreme Court earlier this year.
Deputy sheriffs help Darrin Rouse flush his eyes after he was sprayed with a sensory irritant during a scuffle with deputies at Kentville Supreme Court earlier this year. - Ian Fairclough

KENTVILLE, N.S. - A 52-year-old North Kentville man will go to trial next year on charges stemming from an incident at the Kentville courthouse earlier this year.

Darrin Phillip Rouse was not in Kentville provincial court Aug. 14 when his lawyer, Zeb Brown, entered not guilty pleas on his behalf to charges of uttering threats, resisting arrest, assaulting a peace officer, causing a disturbance and breach of probation.

Rouse was arrested and charged following an altercation in the lobby of the courthouse on April 17, during which he was pepper-sprayed. The incident happened during a break in Rouse’s trial on other charges in Kentville Supreme Court.

Brown told Judge Chris Manning Aug. 14 that Rouse is requesting an outside judge be brought in for the new trial because two of the witnesses are deputy sheriffs, who would be known to local judges. He said a local defence lawyer who was also a witness might be called to testify.

Brown said there might also be concerns because Rouse has had past issues with deputy sheriffs.

Crown attorney Bob Morrison said someone from outside his office may also be brought in to take over the case.

The trial was scheduled for Jan. 30

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