The Vancouver Police Department does not anticipate charges after an altercation between Boston Bruins forward Milan Lucic and another man was caught on video, the latest in a string of ugly incidents that prompted the hockey star to say he is “done trying to defend” his hometown.
Mr. Lucic, who was born in Vancouver and played junior hockey here before he joined the Bruins, was outside a club on Granville Street early Sunday when the video was filmed.
Mr. Lucic – whose team beat the Vancouver Canucks in the 2011 Stanley Cup final, but lost to Vancouver at Rogers Arena on Saturday night – can be seen exchanging words with the other man during the 55-second clip. Mr. Lucic later tells police the man hit him two or three times, though no punches can be seen on the video.
Monday, Mr. Lucic told reporters near Boston that he was the victim of an unprovoked attack and is exploring his legal options.
Sergeant Randy Fincham, a Vancouver police spokesman, said police do have the ability to reopen or reinitiate an investigation at a victim’s request.
However, Sgt. Fincham said charges are not currently in the works.
“In relation to the incident depicted on the recent YouTube video, no arrests were made and no charges are pending,” the police spokesman wrote in an e-mail. “Around 4:00 on Sunday morning, police witnessed a physical altercation between two men at Granville and Nelson Street. One man suffered a minor cut to his lip and refused assistance from the police.”
Sgt. Fincham said he could not identify the individuals involved for privacy reasons.
This is not the first time Mr. Lucic, or those closest to him, have faced animosity from Vancouver-area residents.
In February, 2012, about eight months after the Bruins defeated the Canucks in the Cup final, a church frequented by Mr. Lucic’s parents was vandalized. Someone spray-painted “Go Canuks Go” – misspelled – and drew an image of a penis on a church wall. A local graffiti removal company later offered to paint over the mess for free.
Mr. Lucic said Monday his grandparents have also been severely harassed inside Rogers Arena.
“I have no reason left to try and defend my city, and the people of my city,” Mr. Lucic said. “Other than being at Rogers Arena, no one will ever see me in downtown Vancouver ever again.”
Though Mr. Lucic painted all Vancouverites with the same brush, he does appear to receive some support during the video.
At one point, a man walks up to Mr. Lucic and says he saw what happened and can be a witness.
Mr. Lucic also received support from some Vancouverites on social media, including a local hockey school that said no one spends more time signing autographs or taking photographs than the Bruins forward.
Arthur Griffiths, a former owner of the Canucks, said in an interview that Mr. Lucic should know the majority of the team’s fans are good people.
In fact, he said Mr. Lucic wouldn’t be with the Bruins today if not for the support he received from Vancouverites growing up.