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Man Requests 'Trial By Combat' To Settle Legal Dispute With Ex-Wife

FAIRWAY, Kan. (CBS Local) -- A Kansas man embroiled in a contentious legal battle with his ex-wife has asked an Iowa court to let him engage in a sword fight with his ex-wife and her attorney in a "trial by combat."

David Ostrom, 40, of Paola, Kansas, filed the motion against his former wife, Bridgette Ostrom, 38, of Harlan, Iowa, on January 3.

Ostrom claimed in his motion that his ex-wife and her attorney had "destroyed me legally" and "I now wish to give them the chance to meet me on the field of battle where I will rend their souls from their corporal [sic] bodies."

Ostrom and his ex-wife have been mired in disputes over custody and visitation issues and property tax payments.

Ostrom argued in his motion that the court has the power to let the parties "resolve our disputes on the field of battle, legally" since trial by combat "has never been explicitly banned or restricted as a right in these United States," and was used "as recently as 1818 in British Court."

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Posted by KCTV5 News Kansas City on Tuesday, January 14, 2020

The motion concluded with a concession that Ostrom's ex-wife "may choose a champion (her attorney Matthew Husdon) to stand in her stead" in the trial by combat, a phrase popularized in the hit HBO fantasy drama "Game of Thrones."

Hudson asked the judge to reject the request, arguing in his legal response that because a duel could end in death, "such ramifications likely outweigh those of property tax and custody issues."

Judge Craig Dreismeier said he won't be issuing a decisions anytime soon, citing irregularities with both sides' motions and responses.

Ostrom said he's not violent or crazy, but frustrated by what he considers a system that is stacked against men when it comes to issues of custody and financial support.

"I'm not interested in physically causing harm to anyone," he told CBS affiliate KCTV.

Ostrom said he knows the whole thing is ridiculous and absurd -- but that's the point.

"They've tried to ignore me and not address equal custody, and I think this puts a spotlight on them," he said.

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