LIMA — A Lima man with a clean criminal history who insisted he was merely trying to help a woman kick her drug addiction by taking her into his home was sentenced Friday to four years in prison for stabbing the woman with a knife.
Keith Watts, 60, of Lima, pleaded guilty in September to one count of felonious assault, a felony of the second degree, in connection with the incident that took place April 1 in the area of Catalpa and Sugar streets.
Judge Terri Kohlrieser told Watts he could apply for early release after serving six months behind bars and added that such a request would be viewed favorably.
Lima police responded to the intersection of Catalpa and Sugar streets after a 911 call that a male was assaulting and stabbing a female. The caller said both subject were leaving the area westbound on Catalpa Street in a green Honda.
Officers stopped the vehicle, driven by Watts, in the area of St. Johns Avenue and Vine Street. The victim was in the back seat bleeding heavily from what appeared to be stab wounds to the arm and leg.
The report describes the woman as “hysterical” and notes she told officers that Watts tried to kill her. A witness also identified Watts as the man who attacked Watkins, according to court records.
A video from Unity Elementary School reportedly shows Watts chasing the victim. When he caught up with her, “it appears as if he throws her to the ground” and either strikes and/or stabs the woman several more times,” according to court documents.
Watts’s attorney, Carroll Creighton, said his client was involved in a romantic relationship with the younger woman and was “provoked” into attacking her.
Watts told the judge, “I’m sorry for what I did. I was foolish. I had feelings for this young lady, and I wanted to help her. She told me she would stop her drug use, but that didn’t happen. I’m sorry for what I did, and it will never happen again. I’m asking you to have mercy on me.”