Hearing delayed for accused Missouri lawmaker

Thursday, September 2, 2010 | 1:21 p.m. CDT; updated 3:21 p.m. CDT, Thursday, September 2, 2010

JEFFERSON CITY — A Missouri judge has postponed a hearing on whether to order Republican House member Brian Nieves to stay away from a rival candidate's staff member.

Cole County Judge Jon Beetem canceled Thursday's scheduled hearing but did not immediately set a new date.

Nieves' attorney, Michael Payne, said he requested the delay so he could review a recently amended petition filed on behalf of Shawn Bell.

Bell was the campaign manager for Dick Stratman, whom Nieves defeated in the Aug. 3 Republican primary for an eastern Missouri Senate seat.

Bell is seeking an order of protection against Nieves. He claims Nieves roughed him up when he visited Nieves' campaign office the day after the primary.

Payne has said the allegations against his client are baseless.

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