Green Bay fan sues over Bears' sideline ban on Packers gear

Published: Updated:
H. Rick Bamman - hbamman@shawmedia.com
Chicago Bears quarterbacks Mike Glennon (left) and Mark Sanchez leave the Walter Payton Center after the shortened minicamp practice on Thursday, June 15, 2017, in Lake Forest, Ill.
H. Rick Bamman - hbamman@shawmedia.com Chicago Bears quarterbacks Mike Glennon (left) and Mark Sanchez leave the Walter Payton Center after the shortened minicamp practice on Thursday, June 15, 2017, in Lake Forest, Ill. — H. Rick Bamman - hbamman@shawmedia.com

CHICAGO – One Green Bay Packers fan is going to court over a favorite Wisconsin pastime of disparaging the arch rival Chicago Bears.

Russell Beckman filed a lawsuit in federal court Friday accusing the Bears of violating his free-speech rights by prohibiting fans from wearing Packers apparel at Bears' pregame warmups. He is seeking a court order lifting the ban.

Beckman lives in Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin, near the Illinois state line and holds Bears seasons tickets. Season-ticket holders can attend certain pregame warmups on the sidelines.

The Bears sent Beckman an email before a December Bears-Packers game warning in capital letters, "NO OPPOSING TEAM GEAR WILL BE ALLOWED." He went in Packers apparel anyway and was turned away.

The Bears didn't respond to a message seeking comment Monday.