Los Angeles Superior Court Justice Elizabeth A. Grimes has granted a request by the former Laguna Beach star's attorneys to suppress his celebrity status and any evidence that could paint him in a negative light at his upcoming civil trial, E! News reported Monday.
Tow truck driver Dario Stevenson filed a lawsuit against Wahler for compensatory and punitive damages stemming from a verbal and physical altercation that occurred in September 2006 when Wahler was allegedly traveling in a car with friends and their vehicle was blocked by his tow truck, which was trying to move an illegally parked vehicle.
Stevenson claims he was "roughed up" by Wahler while trying to impound the other car and added the vehicle Wahler was a passenger in almost "clipped" the tow truck as well as traffic officer Jonathan Wallace.
In addition, both Wallace and Stevenson -- who are African-American -- have claimed Wahler used the N-word during the incident.
With the civil trial set to start September 2, Wahler's attorneys requested their client's arrest-riddled past be suppressed.
Grimes granted the request without elaborating, according to E! News, which added she also gave permission for Wahler's counsel to raise "some uncomplimentary facts" about Stevenson during the civil trial -- including his prior felony conviction for embezzlement.
In addition, Grimes has yet to rule on the admissibility of the alleged racial tirade by Wahler toward Stevenson and Wallace, E! News reported.
Wallace filed an assault, battery and violation of civil rights lawsuit against Wahler and DeLuca last August, and the complaint has yet to be heard.
(Photo credit MTV)
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