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Man who caused uproar at minor hockey game gets conditional discharge

A man who disrupted a St. John's minor hockey game by shouting at the referee and a player in a drunken rage Sunday was given a conditional discharge today.

In provincial court this morning, Trevor Hickerson pleaded guilty to causing a disturbance by being drunk in a public place.

A charge of mischief by damaging property was withdrawn by the Crown.

The 25-year-old was arrested Sunday as a result of an incident that happened at the Rogers Bussey Arena, formerly Brother O'Hehir Arena, on Bonaventure Avenue.

Related story:

Man arrested for causing disturbance at hockey arena

At around 6 p.m., Hickerson was seen inside the arena intoxicated and yelling over the boards during the game at a youth goalie and a referee. His belligerent behaviour forced referees to stop the game for about five minutes.

When spectators tried to get him to leave, he went outside and jumped on several cars, urinating on one.

When police arrived a few minutes later, Hickerson was seen on a parking lot walking in the direction of Merrymeeting Road. When he saw the police car coming towards him, he took out a liquor bottle from his coat, put it to his lips and drank from it in front of the officers.

As officers placed him under arrest, Hickerson was heard saying, "Stupid Canadians!" "(Expletive) Newfies!" "This is (expletive) bull (expletive)." He also said, "(Expletive) female officers."

Prosecutor Jason House asked Judge Lois Skanes to give Hickerson a suspended sentence with six months' probation.

Duty counsel Collin Shepherd asked for a discharge.

He pointed out that Hickerson had no criminal record and spent the night in jail. "So he's had a chance to reflect on his behaviour," House said.

He said he has accepted responsibility.

When Hickerson was given the chance to talk, he apologized and told the judge that he has a problem with drinking and he struggled to get it under control. He said he's been to rehab a few times.

"I'm drinking my life away," he said.

The judge said, "A lot of things happen to people when they drink." She said Hickerson is still young and has managed to hold down a full-time job. She said it just wasn't the fact that he was drinking, it's where he was drinking.

"It happened in a place where there was children," she said.

As part of the sentence, Hickerson was ordered to stay away from the arena and have no contact with a handful people there.

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