Rice won’t be charged
Holland College details altercation that led to stay-away order against city councillor
An altercation that resulted in Holland College issuing a stayaway order against Charlottetown Coun. Eddie Rice will not result in any criminal charges. “The police presented the Crown with the evidence provided by Holland College in support of a complaint that Mr. Rice had assaulted and/or threatened a staffer,’’ Crown attorney Lisa Goulden told The Guardian Friday.
“Upon review, the evidence did not support the laying of charges of assault or uttering threats.’’
The college released a detailed account of the incident Friday, claiming Rice used profane and threatening language, restrained a college employee by holding her arm, and touched her several times without her permission.
The altercation occurred on July 13 between 5:30 and 6 p.m. in the foyer of the Florence Simmons Performance Hall on the Prince of Wales campus during the opening event for a film festival.
A spokeswoman for the college says the employee was greeting patrons when Rice approached her to ask about a photograph, which had been on display in the performance hall lounge. The photo, which was of Rice and the performance hall’s benefactress Florence Simmons, had been removed earlier in the day due to a damaged frame. The college says an ensuing altercation lasted more than seven minutes and was captured by one of the college’s security cameras. Goulden says she reviewed the entire video.
“The allegations that were presented consisted of a complaint that Mr. Rice had assaulted a staff member and the video evidence and witness statements did not support that,’’ she said.
The college says it will consider
The Guardian’s request to view the video.
The college’s employee filed an incident report with the college requesting Charlottetown Police Services investigate a complaint of assault.
The college issued a stay-away order a few days following the incident, informing Rice that he is to refrain from entering onto the premises of the Prince of Wales campus, including all lawns and grounds, walkway, parking areas and buildings. “If you commit such an offence you may be arrested and
detained by a police officer if the officer believes your arrest and detention is necessary to establish your identity or to prevent the continuation or repetition of an offence,” the order states. The college spokeswoman said there is “no expiry date’’ on the stay-away order.
Rice declined to comment on the incident when approached by a reporter Monday following a council meeting, and did not answer or return calls made to his cellphone by The Guardian Friday.
Rice was first elected to Charlottetown
council in 1981. He served as the chairman of the public works committee until 1989 when he took over as chairman of the Charlottetown Water Commission.
In 2010, Rice was re-elected to council for Ward 1. He was re-elected again in the 2014 municipal election.
In May 2011, Rice was charged under the Highway Traffic Act after the vehicle he was driving clipped a bicycle on a crosswalk on York Lane. The girl pushing the bike was not seriously injured.
Coun. Eddie Rice listens to a presentation Monday at Charlottetown city council.