The eldest son of former Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin is seeking to bar the media from covering court hearings after he was accused of assaulting his father last year at the family home in Alaska.
Track Palin’s lawyer filed a motion Friday to prohibit or limit media access to proceedings in Veterans Court, including a hearing scheduled to take place Tuesday, to ensure the case does not become a distraction to other veterans in the system.
The lawyer, Patrick Bergt, said he also plans to file an application next week to formally transfer the case to the Veterans Court – part of Alaska’s therapeutic court system.
Track Palin served in the military for one year in 2008 during the Iraq War. Sarah Palin has suggested that Track’s assault might be related to post-traumatic stress disorder.
Track Palin was arrested in December after his mother told authorities her son was on some kind of medication and "freaking out."
A police affidavit says father Todd Palin was bleeding from head cuts. He told police the dispute began when his son called to pick up his truck from the Palins' home in Wasilla.
According to the affidavit, Todd Palin said he told Track Palin not to come to the house but that his son said he would come anyway to beat him up. Todd Palin told police he got his pistol "to protect his family."
Track Palin told police he broke a window, disarmed his father and put him on the ground.
When police arrived, Track Palin yelled at officers, calling them peasants, and "moved around in a strange manner" before being arrested without incident, a Wasilla police affidavit says.
Track Palin pleaded not guilty in January to a felony burglary charge in the incident. He also faces misdemeanor charges of assault and criminal mischief.
The judge overseeing the assault case is Anchorage District Court Judge David Wallace, who was appointed to the bench by Sarah Palin when she was Alaska's governor. A call by the Associated Press, asking if Wallace planned to recuse himself because of that connection, was not returned.
Alaska law allows either prosecutors or the defense to pre-empt a specific judge from overseeing a case if they deem it necessary, Anchorage-based media attorney John McKay told the AP.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.