Newport city councilman arrested for assault

By: Dee DeQuattro

Email: Ddequattro@abc6.com

Twitter: @deedequattro

Reporting by Mike LaCrosse

mlacrosse@abc6.com

A Newport City Councilman was arrested and has pleaded no contest to a simple assault charge after an incident with a contractor over a ladder.

State Police say City Councilor Michael Farley assaulted 41-year-old Kevin Schiavone who was working on a house next door to his back in June.

ABC6 News reporter Mike LaCrosse spoke to both Farley and Schiavone after the incident and both men told different stories.

Farley claimed that Schiavone stole his ladder but Schiavone claims that it was an accident. He said he believed the ladder belonged to his client. Schiavone said Farley confronted him and attacked him, meanwhile Farley told ABC6 he acted in self defense.

State Police were called in to investigate the matter. As a result Farley was arrested on Wednesday. After entering a no contest plea in Newport District Court Farley was ordered to pay restitution. 

“I should’ve waited police to arrive after I contacted them.  Regardless, when you make a mistake you can’t move on until you acknowledge it.  That’s what I did today,” said Farley.

Schiavone says he is pleased with the court action and is ready to move on with his life.

Newport Mayor Harry Winthrop says the council can’t force Farley to resign, but that he should do it on his own.

“I believe he should step down, it’s a disservice to the community and to have that stigma on this council in this town is absolutely wrong,” said Winthrop.

Farley says he has no intentions to resign.

(C) WLNE-TV 2014