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Posted on Sun, Dec 11, 2011 : 2:18 p.m.

No-contact order partially lifted for man accused of strangling and pointing gun at family member

By Kyle Feldscher

A Superior Township man will be able to have limited contact with the family member he allegedly strangled and pointed a gun at during an August argument, a judge has ruled.

Ricky Rice Jr., who was 36 when he was charged, allegedly pulled a gun on the victim on the morning of Aug. 21, threatened to shoot her and her dog and strangled her to the point that blood came out of her mouth, according to prosecutors.

However, if the victim chooses to write a letter to Rice while he is in the Washtenaw County Jail and asks him to write back, or if she requests a visit, Rice is allowed to see her, according to Washtenaw County Trial Court Judge Archie Brown’s ruling.

Assistant Public Defender Laura Dudley asked Brown to lift the no-contact order that was a condition of Rice’s $250,000 bail, telling Brown that the woman had asked for the order to be removed. Dudley said all contact would have to be initiated by the victim because Rice is still lodged at the Washtenaw County Jail.

Rice is charged with two counts each of assault with intent to murder, assault with intent to do bodily harm less than murder, interfering with electronic communications and one charge each of unlawful imprisonment, assault with a dangerous weapon, assaulting, resisting or obstructing a police officer, domestic violence, reckless use of firearms and a felony firearms charge.

Rice is scheduled to go to trial at 8:30 a.m. on Jan. 3 and he will return to court on Wednesday. Dudley said she is negotiating with Washtenaw County prosecutors on a plea deal.

According to Washtenaw County Assistant Prosecutor Arianne Slay, Rice and the victim began arguing on the night of Aug. 20 and continued the next morning. Slay said Rice allegedly hit the victim with an open hand in the face and stopped her from making a call on a cell phone before telling her he was going to shoot her.

Slay said Rice allegedly grabbed a revolver belonging to the woman, pointed the gun at her and moved closer to her as she lay on the floor. The victim escaped and ran into a bedroom and Rice began allegedly pacing outside the door, Slay said. When Rice heard the victim attempt to make a phone call on a different cell phone, he allegedly broke into the room and took the phone away from her, Slay said.

Rice then allegedly grabbed a brown belt and wrapped it around the victim’s throat, not allowing her to breathe, according to Slay. He allegedly dragged the victim from the bedroom into the kitchen and noticed blood coming from the victim’s mouth and nose, convincing him to loosen his grip on the belt, Slay said.

The victim broke loose in the kitchen and ran into the garage, where Rice allegedly followed her and strangled her with a T-shirt, Slay said. The victim broke free a final time and alerted neighbors in front of the home to call police, Slay said. Rice was arrested at the home, according to police.

The gun allegedly discharged by itself before deputies arrested Rice and he was found with superficial cuts on his wrists, according to Slay. A full can of gasoline was in the home’s bathroom, she said.

Alcohol is believed to have been a major factor in the incident, Dudley said. She reiterated in court on Wednesday that the victim told her that this type of alleged abuse was out of character for Rice and had never happened before.

Brown lowered Rice’s bail in September from $1 million to $250,000.

Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.


Pixie Belle

Tue, Dec 13, 2011 : 3:35 p.m.

This wasn't enough to be attempted murder?! Just because he changed his mind doesn't mean he didn't know what he was doing.


Mon, Dec 12, 2011 : 12:27 p.m.

Let's not assume she is welcoming him back onto her life (which would be foolish and perhaps ultimately tragic). Perhaps, instead, it is part of her healing process to write him and tell him everything she wants to say but at a safe distance.


Wed, Dec 14, 2011 : 8:23 p.m.

I like how you think. Most people hide behind their computers and post these self-righteous responses. I'd be curious to know how many of these folks would have those same thoughts if the situation were in THEIR plate. It's easy to say about what a person would do...until they're IN that situation. Yes, I agree!! Perhaps she needs to see him and talk him to seek closure as part of the healing process. I commend her on having the courage to see him. He doesn't deserve it however if this is a method for her to find the strength she needs to move on...then I applaud her.


Mon, Dec 12, 2011 : 12:06 a.m.

2 words: stockholm syndrome.


Mon, Dec 12, 2011 : 5:08 a.m.

yes, stockholm syndrome.


Sun, Dec 11, 2011 : 10:37 p.m.

At least get the poor dog out of there it doesn't have a choice. If she invites this guy back she has only herself to blame

Billy Bob Schwartz

Mon, Dec 12, 2011 : 12:12 a.m.

For whatever time she allegedly has left!


Sun, Dec 11, 2011 : 10:19 p.m.

"The gun allegedly discharged by itself " what can I say...that won't get my comment censored! I'll word it carefully below...


Sun, Dec 11, 2011 : 10:08 p.m.

This CAN'T be love! I hope the victim puts her big girl panties on, and moves on. I had to do that once!

Barb's Mom

Sun, Dec 11, 2011 : 10:07 p.m.

My daughter's husband didn't have that kind of personality until the day he strangled her to death. I hope this victim will take heed and stay away from the person who tried to kill her.


Sun, Dec 11, 2011 : 8:47 p.m.

Well I would hope that he would avoid contact with the previously strangled person, mostly due to the fact that by definition "strangling" has a fatal outcome.


Mon, Dec 12, 2011 : 12:49 a.m.

No, strangling can happen without a fatal outcome. Definition of STRANGLE transitive verb 1 a : to choke to death by compressing the throat with something (as a hand or rope) : throttle b : to obstruct seriously or fatally the normal breathing of c : stifle 2 : to suppress or hinder the rise, expression, or growth of Number 2 is the case here. I will take a Webster definition over yours anytime. Thanks for playing

say it plain

Sun, Dec 11, 2011 : 8:46 p.m.

omg, that kind of 'abuse'--i.e., the kind that actually precedes a murderous assault for instance!--is very *often* 'out of character' for a person who nonetheless can and will commit such an act! And it *always* has 'never happened before', until the first time it happens! I hope the victim here gets the help she needs to let this relationship go, and the court support to keep her safe from this person who 'doesn't *usually* strangle/smack/threaten-to-shoot' her, but just when they get really really drunk, yikes...


Sun, Dec 11, 2011 : 7:46 p.m.

Must be Love!


Mon, Dec 12, 2011 : 9:43 p.m.