Tom Cruise Gets Restraining Order


Dec. 12 2008, Published 4:08 a.m. ET

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A restraining order has been issued against an Iraq war veteran who apparantly won't leave Tom Cruise alone.

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On Wednesday, a Santa Barbara Superior Court judge granted the order after the 29-year-old man, Edward Van Tassel, reportedly brandished a gun near a freeway and weeks later tried to hand deliver a letter to Cruise.

An attorney for the former solider said Van Tassel wanted to give the letter to Cruise to enlist him in the cause of helping other veterans. Van Tassel went to the actor's Beverly Hills home on Dec. 3 and again on Sunday to try and deliver the letter.

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"He's coming home like hundreds of other veterans, wounded and suffering from whatever kind of scarring that is," said Van Tassel's attorney. 

"Tom didn't even know about it, and the judge did the right thing -- you've got to respect the judge for it. But it was not something Tom applied for," an attorney for Cruise said.

Authorities arrested Van Tassel last month on weapons charges after an incident near Santa Barbara, northwest of Los Angeles, in which he stood on a freeway overpass with a gun and a sign in what his attorney described as a protest.

Tom Cruise

Following the arrest, he was sent to a veterans' hospital in Los Angeles, but left the facility when he tried to deliver the letter to Cruise.

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Van Tassel has been sent back to the hospital where he is receiving psychiatric care and is no longer permitted to leave, his attorney said.

Cruise's attorney said the actor "feels very strongly about veterans of not only the Iraq war, but any veterans of war, and that they should be taken care of."


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