May 21st, 2024

Trial cancelled for men accused of hockey attack

By Delon Shurtz on January 28, 2021.


The trial for two men accused of attacking a referee and coach at a youth hockey tournament more than a year ago, has been cancelled.
Robert Farrell Creighton and Todd William Cross Child were scheduled to begin a four-day trial earlier this week in Lethbridge provincial court. However, the matter was brought forward last Friday, and the trial was cancelled after the men’s lawyers said the case will likely be resolved at a subsequent court hearing.
A resolution typically involves an agreement between the Crown and defence, which results in guilty pleas to some or all of the charges. Details of the offences are read by the Crown, and recommendations for a sentence are presented to the judge.
Creighton, 56, is charged with one count of assault, while 38-year-old Cross Child faces two counts of assault.
The two men were charged in relation to a three-on-three hockey tournament Sept. 15, 2019, during which a player got into a verbal spat with a referee, police reported.
The youth struck the official with his stick and the referee pushed the player to the ice.
A group of coaches and a relative of the player then walked onto the ice, where a coach from the opposing team was allegedly shoved down and the ref was punched multiple times by two men before the altercation ended.
The annual Quest for the Cup tournament involved players between the ages of seven and 12 years and was organized by the Lethbridge-based skills development business, High Performance Hockey.
The accused pleaded not guilty to their charges during a brief hearing July 10 and the Crown elected to deal with the charges by summary procedure rather than indictment, which is more serious and can result in custodial sentences of up to five years for assault.
Calgary lawyer Balfour Der, who represents Creighton, said Wednesday there have been ongoing resolution discussions between defence and the Crown since the outset of the case, but it took time to “dot all the i’s and cross all the t’s.”
“We have resolved our case in relation to my client,” Der confirmed.
Cross Child and Creighton return to court on separate days next month to speak to the matter. Lethbridge lawyer Miranda Hlady said that when her client returns to court the matter will either be resolved, or a new trial will have to be scheduled.

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