Clint Kimmins: photo Billy Morris
Just stumbled across this article on stabmag, pretty damn interesting stuff…
In 2004, a 22 year-old Kimmins was on the cusp of surfing greatness. As a teen, he showed rare poise in the volcanic jowls of surfing’s ultimate proving ground, Hawaii. His competitive surfing was no less impressive, earning him a lucrative deal with one of surfing’s premiere companies, Rip Curl. Whilst his blend of big wave heroics, competitive brilliance and new school aerials saw him featured regularly between the gloss of the globe’s premiere surfing magazines. That changed in 2004 when Kimmins was sentenced to 18 months in prison for stabbing a man during a brawl at a friend’s 21st birthday.
STAB journalist Fred Pawle first reported the story in 2006 . According to the report, Gold Coast surf club member, Dru Baggely had attacked Kimmins. In an attempt to defend himself, Kimmins picked up a broken bottle and stabbed his assailant. The jury agreed with Kimmins’s version of events, but decided he went too far when he stabbed the man a second time with the weapon. He was judged to have “unlawfully wounded” Dru Baggeley and sentenced to 18 months prison. He was released after six.
The decision cost Kimmins his contract, his career, saw him barred from entering certain countries mandatory for success as a pro surfer, and suffer an ignominious fall from grace. To this day Kimmins maintains his innocence.
Last Friday, Dru Baggely, the man whose testimony put Kimmins away, was sentenced to a maximum of 12 years in prison for the manufacture and supply of a large quantity of ecstasy.Asked whether he was aware of the shady dealings of Baggaley back then, Kimmins says “Yeah, for sure. I knew what they were doing back [during my trial].”
During his trial in ‘04, Kimmins told STAB he was forced to spend “three weeks listening to a person who’s never met me, describe me as a complete thug.” Baggaley’s prosecution team assassinated Kimmins’s character in an attempt to prove his guilt. And yet all along, Kimmins sat on a piece of information, which could have destroyed the prosecution’s case.
Asked today whether he believed letting slip about Baggeley’s operations would have changed the jury’s verdict, Kimmins is in no doubt.“It would have been a hundred percent different. There is no way they would have believed his story. It was all a crock of shit anyway.” So why didn’t he tell?
Read the rest of the story over on STABMAG