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A trial scheduled for Feb. 17 regarding Providence mayoral candidate Chris Young's arrest at a University event has been postponed to March 10.

Young was charged with disorderly conduct following a November forum on health care reform. Stephen Ryan, city solicitor, said he had requested that the trial be postponed because he had a scheduling conflict. Young and his lawyers, Thomas Brejcha and Keven McKenna, appeared in court as scheduled, though the trial was not held.

Brejcha flew to Providence from Chicago for the trial. He works for the Thomas More Society, a nonprofit public interest law firm specializing in incidents related to pro-life activism. A spokesperson for the society, Stephanie Lewis, said Brejcha had gone to Providence hoping the case would be dismissed as requested in a court filing.

Ryan said the defendants were notified about a week in advance, but the Web site for the Thomas More Society posted a notice on Feb. 16 that the trial would occur as scheduled.
Young said he hoped the case would be dismissed, but that he was considering taking civil action against the University after the trial. He is banned from entering University buildings, a fact that is inhibiting his political campaign, he said.

Young was arrested at the Nov. 30 forum after he voiced his views on abortion to guest speaker Rep. Patrick Kennedy, D-R.I. In refusing to yield the floor during the question and answer period, Young infringed on the "rights of others to participate in this public, open forum," Vice President for Public Affairs and University Relations Marisa Quinn told The Herald in January. Young says that his behavior was civil.

Young has voiced his concerns about the University publicly on several occasions. In speeches, he has called for an investigation into President Ruth Simmons' tenure on the board of the Council on Foreign Relations, as well as Goldman Sachs, a position which she recently ceded. He also advocates for a tax on the University's property, though he said he stands against the tax on out-of-state students who attend school in Rhode Island.


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