MANKATO, Minn. — A former Minnesota State University, Mankato, football player has sued two men convicted of causing the student’s permanent brain injuries during a 2014 assault.
The civil lawsuit filed by Isaac Kolstad and his family also names Blue Bricks Bar and South Street Saloon. They allege the bars illegally sold liquor to Philip Nelson, who was 20 years old at the time.
“Nelson’s intoxication was a direct and proximate cause of Nelson’s decision to begin the altercation with Kolstad and to kick him in the head,” according to the lawsuit filed last week in Blue Earth County District Court.
According to the lawsuit, the incident occurred May 11, 2014 when Kolstad was in the downtown entertainment district and approached Nelson to congratulate him on his recent transfer to the college. Nelson mistook Kolstad for the Blue Bricks bouncer and became enraged. The two were separated and Kolstad began to walk away after pushing Nelson to the ground. Trevor Shelley, who pleaded guilty in March to felony second-degree assault in the incident, observed the altercation and then punched Kolstad in the face. After falling to the pavement, Kolstad was kicked in the head by Nelson.
Nelson pleaded guilty to fifth-degree assault in January 2015 and was placed on probation, avoiding any jail time. Shelley was sentenced to five months in jail.
According to the suit, Kolstad’s medical expenses are about $1 million and continue to increase. Kolstad’s family has claims which include his wife Molly who by law has a claim of more than $50,000.
Kolstad and his family have requested a jury trial for all damages and losses recoverable by law, according to the suit.
The four defendants in the civil suit have not yet filed responses to allegations. And their attorneys did not return requests for comment on Monday.