Rice won’t be charged

Hol­land Col­lege de­tails al­ter­ca­tion that led to stay-away or­der against city coun­cil­lor

Journal Pioneer - - ISLAND NEWS - BY JIM DAY

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.

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Coun. Ed­die Rice lis­tens to a pre­sen­ta­tion Mon­day at Char­lot­te­town city coun­cil.

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