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Published June 12, 2013, 06:05 PM

Halstad mayor accused of rape keeping victim away from his children

Ada, MN (WDAY TV) - In an Ada courtroom today Halstad's Mayor denied multiple rape charges against him and tried to make sure the victim stays away from his children.

By: Kay Cooley, WDAY

Ada, MN (WDAY TV) - In an Ada courtroom today Halstad's Mayor denied multiple rape charges against him and tried to make sure the victim stays away from his children.

A restraining order has been issued, not against Sortland, but the victim.

Steve Sortland entered not guilty pleas in court today and again, everyone is being extremely tight lipped about this ongoing case.

Do you have any comments for us today?

Steve Sortland, Halstad Mayor: “No Comment.”

Prosecutors have charged Sortland with two counts of criminal sexual conduct. He's accused of raping his then-girlfriend late last month.

He's denied all charges against him, and both prosecution and defense will not tell us much more.

Joel Arnason, Rosenquist and Arnason Law Firm: "We're going to be set for a scheduling conference and there will be further proceedings and we'll just see what happens."

But what we did learn is a restraining order was issued this morning, protecting Sortland's three children from the victim.

In court documents, Sortland says the victim approached them and made inappropriate comments, damaged several items in their home, and stole things from his children.

Arnason: "I really don't have enough information to make further comments right now."

Attempts to reach the victim were unsuccessful.

Sortland has taken a leave of absence from his post and his next court date is set for July 24th.

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