Canada briefs – December 28

Police in Charlottetown are asking for the public’s help as they continue their search for a man visiting from Ottawa.

P.E.I. police search for man

CHARLOTTETOWN — Police in Charlottetown are asking for the public’s help as they continue their search for a man visiting from Ottawa.

Trevor William Rankin was last seen in downtown Charlottetown on Christmas Eve as he was getting out of a cab at 2:30 a.m.

He had spent the evening at a downtown bar with a relative.

Rankin is 38 years old and has an average build, standing 5-9 and weighing 160 pounds. He has short brown hair, blue eyes and is clean shaven.

Rankin was last seen wearing a dark blue shirt, blue jeans and a charcoal grey peacoat.

Police say their search has included the water in Charlottetown harbour.

Rankin has family living in the Charlottetown area, police confirmed.

Death accidental: victim’s family

OTTAWA — The family of a young man killed in an incident connected to the son of former Newfoundland premier Brian Tobin is calling his death an accident.

Alex Zolpis died on Christmas Eve and longtime friend Jack Tobin was subsequently charged with impaired and dangerous driving.

The incident happened in a downtown Ottawa parking garage where police were summoned after reports that a man was pinned under a truck.

In an obituary, the Zolpis family says Alex, 24, died in an accident and is remembered by his parents, sister and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins and partner Emma Roberts.

Tobin, 24, was released on $100,000 bond on Christmas Day.

Zolpis’ family has requested that donations in Alex’s memory be made to Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

Bieber attracts throng of teens

KITCHENER, Ont. — A Justin Bieber fan says she was ”freaking out” when she spotted the teen idol shopping for Boxing Day bargains at a mall in Kitchener, Ont.

Bieber was among those checking out the stores at the Fairview Park Mall on Sunday.

It didn’t take long for groups of adoring girls to spot the singing sensation, who hails from nearby Stratford.

Chante Gratton, 14, says she was in the same line as Bieber at one store where she was buying some clothes.

“I was shaking with excitement, I was so happy,” Gratton said.

“This is my first time ever seeing him in person. I’m a really big fan of his, so I really had to see what he was up to.”

Gratton says a couple of her friends tried to go up to Bieber but couldn’t make it through the bodyguards and other girls crowding around him.

Snowmobile crash kills one

PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. — A Prince George man is dead after a snowmobile crash on an island in the middle of a northern B.C. lake.

Mounties say the 44-year-old victim had no vital signs after a head-on collision with another snowmobile in the area of Eena Lake about 9:30 p.m. Sunday.

He was rushed to the University Hospital of Northern BC, where he was pronounced dead.

RCMP have been slowed in getting to the scene by warm temperatures, and will have to assess the safety of the lake before moving ahead with the investigation.