Hennepin County District Judge Mel Dickstein on Tuesday denied an attempt by five University of Minnesota football players to dismiss temporary restraining orders against them after their attorney argued their due process rights were violated.
An alleged victim of a Sept. 2 incident petitioned to bar players Ray Buford, KiAnte Hardin, Tamarion Johnson, Dior Johnson and Carlton Djam from her apartment, and also from TCF Bank Stadium, where she takes part in the university’s gameday operations.
The Gophers have a home game against Purdue on Saturday.
The attorney for the players, Lee Hutton, said the orders against his clients were unconstitutional because they were not allowed to challenge the restrictions before a judge signed off on them.
“The order was issued without any evidence presented,” Hutton told Judge Dickstein during a hearing Tuesday morning. “Due process requires adequate notice and the opportunity to be heard.”
He said Minnesota’s laws pertaining to issuing harassment orders is “unconstitutional on its face.”
Minnesota’s law allows a judge to issue a temporary restraining order if there are “reasonable grounds” to believe the person accused “has engaged in harassment.” The accused then has an opportunity to challenge the order in court.
The players will challenge the restraining order filed against them during a hearing scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday in Hennepin County District Court.
The attorney for the alleged victim of the Sept. 2 incident, Amy Isenor, said declaring restraining orders unconstitutional “would have a chilling effect.”
Dickstein said previously that he will have a decision on whether to keep the restraining orders before Saturday’s game at TCF Bank Stadium.
None of the players have been arrested or charged in connection with the alleged Sept. 2 incident.
The Gophers suspended Hardin, Buford, Tamarion Johnson and Dior Johnson for three games while Minneapolis police investigated, but those players were reinstated to the team when Hennepin County announced it was declining to press charges.