A trial date has been set for the lead guitarist of the Canadian rock group Rush (search), who faces assault charges stemming from an altercation with deputies in his hotel.

Alex Zivojinovich (search), better known by his stage name Alex Lifeson (search), is accused of pushing a female deputy down a hotel stairwell and spitting his blood on a male officer on New Year's 2004. He is scheduled to stand trial May 16, the Naples Daily News reported.

"I think it's (the case) going to trial," said Jerry Berry, Zivojinovich's defense attorney, as he left the Collier County courthouse Wednesday morning.

The trial could be avoided if the state and defense reach a plea agreement in the meantime.

A judge can accept a plea agreement during an April 27 hearing.

Berry and prosecutor Rich Montecalvo would not comment on whether plea discussions were under way.

Zivojinovich was arrested for scuffling with Collier County sheriff's deputies at the Ritz-Carlton Naples at a New Year's Eve party more than a year ago.

He faces two third-degree felony charges that could carry five-year prison sentences.