Chris Fields' then-wife filed a restraining order against him in 2006
Fields thinks the Ellison campaign is responsible for the restraining order filing seeing the light of day.
Chris Fields, the Republican candidate challenging Rep. Keith Ellison this November, had a restraining order filed against him by his then-wife, Jessica Fields, in October 2006.
According to court filings obtained by City Pages, Jessica Fields filed the order in Riverside County, California, where the couple resided at the time. In the October 12, 2006 filing, Jessica Fields specified that the restraining order was for "domestic violence protection."
Jessica Fields then signed a "Reissue Temporary Restraining Order" filing on October 31. A hearing before a judge was scheduled for November 20, but neither Chris nor Jessica showed up and the restraining order was eventually dismissed. The couple divorced just months later, and Chris has since remarried.
City Pages connected with Chris Fields yesterday, and he said we were the first to inform him about the existence of the restraining order. Fields acknowledged that "things happen in the heat of the moment" and said he and his wife were disagreeing about how to divvy up assets at the time, but insisted he's never acted violently toward her. The couple has a 21-year-old son and their relationship today is amicable, Chris said.
Fields said he was never served with a restraining order, but an employee with the family law division of Riverside County Court said if that's true, then the county's standard procedure was flouted.
"He would've been served, and then at the hearing [the restraining order] would've been granted or dismissed," the employee said.
A call to Jessica Fields wasn't returned.
Late in the day yesterday, Chris Fields released a statement addressing the restraining order situation. Click to page two to read it in full. The restraining order itself can be seen on page three.
FIELDS RESPONDS TO ELLISON'S DIRTY CAMPAIGN TACTICS
October 3, 2012 - Minneapolis, MN - Chris Fields, candidate for Congress in Minnesota's Fifth Congressional District, today released the following statement:
Earlier today City Pages reporter Aaron Rupar contacted our campaign, asking for a comment on information that was sent to him by Katherine Quaglieri of New Partners Consulting in Washington, D.C. [note from Aaron Rupar -- the court filing was not actually sent to me by Katherine Quaglieri, though she may have been the original source who sent it to the person who sent it to me.]
New Partners Consulting is a firm that Keith Ellison's campaign has paid over $238,000 this election cycle.
The information contained court records that indicated my ex-wife had issued a temporary restraining order against me.
The restraining order was never served, and up until today I was completely unaware of its existence. I have never been abusive to my ex-wife or son in any manner.
The document dates to 2006, which was a difficult period in my first marriage. My ex-wife was also a Marine. Many military marriages, especially those that involve combat tours overseas, end in divorce, and I'm sad to say that ours was one of them.
My ex-wife and I amicably divorced in 2006, in proceedings where neither of us were represented by attorneys. We enjoy a good relationship today.
When I spoke to my ex-wife this afternoon about these documents she told me during that period she was very troubled by our impending divorce. She is embarrassed and deeply hurt that this information has been made public. I sincerely apologize to her for this intrusion into her private life.
I am disappointed, but not surprised that Keith Ellison's campaign staff and consultants have continually stooped to these types of disgusting tactics.
Unfortunately, when campaigns cannot win on ideas, they engage in what President Bill Clinton called the "politics of personal destruction". In politicians' desperate attempts to cling to power they simply do not care that they cause pain and hurt innocent people like my ex-wife.
Keith Ellison cannot defend his record of failure, so he's lashing out.
As someone who just a short time ago finalized a divorce, I would have thought that Keith Ellison would have more understanding about how difficult these situations can be. Keith would not want my campaign digging through his divorce records and spinning the facts of that case for political gain.
I challenge Keith Ellison to get his campaign out of the gutter, and get back to debating the issues that matter. I look forward to our next public debate, which is scheduled for October 11 on WCCO.
Congressman Ellison should apologize for his desperate and despicable attempt to score political points at the expense of my ex-wife, a retired Marine who served her country honorably and faithfully. He should aslo apologize to the voters of this district for using their campaign donations in ways they would not approve of and playing politics instead of doing the job he was elected to do.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss City Pages' biggest stories.