LPOE Lawyer Argues Past Cases in Appeals Court

By KBJR News 1

July 11, 2013 Updated Jul 11, 2013 at 4:56 PM CST

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com)-- The controversial owner of the downtown Duluth head shop, Last Place on Earth, is appealing a pair of past legal decisions.

Thursday, the Court of Appeals heard arguments involving the first nuisance violation against 'Last Place' and the first raid, by Duluth police, that took place in 2011.

Defense attorney Randall Tigue argued for his client, Jim Carlson that the Minnesota statute for a nuisance violation is unconstitutionally vague.

Carlson is currently the subject of a temporary injunction regarding a nuisance violation, requiring him to pay for two police officers to be stationed in front of his shop whenever its open.

The city has asked for a a permanent injunction which could shut Last Place down for a year.

Tigue argued that if the judge rules in favor of the city in this case it would create a precedent far more dangerous than synthetic drugs will ever be.

City attorneys argued that Last Place falls under the definition of nuisance, citing 2,800 police calls from September of 2011 to August of 2012.

In a separate appeal Tigue also challenged the search and seizure of some articles and money from Last Place in 2011.

Tique asked that some those materials be returned to Jim Carlson.

"Mr. Carlson is entitled to the benefits of state law when he brings an action in state court," said Tigue, outside of the St. Louis County Courthouse on Thursday.

City attorneys said the appeals court cannot rule on the search because the evidence is being used in the federal case against Carlson. The federal trial is expected to start in September.

The appeals court is expected to make a decision within 90 days.

Zach Vavricka

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