2492 North Landing Road, Suite 104 

Virginia Beach, Virginia 2345

Tel. (757) 301-3636 Fax (757) 301-3640 

Additional Office Locations By Appointment: Chesapeake Hampton Richmond Vienna 

December 8, 2020 

Richmond Circuit Court 400 North Ninth Street John Marshall Courts Building Richmond, Virginia 23219 


DeSteph v. Locke, et al 

Dear Clerk: 

Enclosed, please find a Petition for Injunction that I ask you to file in your Court. Service of process will be effectuated on all Defendant’s via email to the Office of the Attorney General as indicated on the attached certificate of service. 

Please alert the duty judge that my client is requesting a hearing as soon as possible on this matter 


Timothy Anderson 

Case No. 




Bill DeSteph 

…...……... V.IIn re: .……. PLAINTIFF(S) 

…… Circuit Court Mamie Locke 


I, the undersigned [ ] plaintiff [ ] defendant [x] attorney for [x] plaintiff [ ] defendant hereby notify the Clerk of Court that I am filing the following civil action. (Please indicate by checking box that most closely identifies the claim being asserted or relief sought.) 


[ ] Appeal/Judicial Review of Decision of 

(select one) [ ] ABC Board [ ] Board of Zoning [ Compensation Board [ ] DMV License Suspension [ ] Employee Grievance Decision [ ] Employment Commission [ ] Local Government [ ] Marine Resources Commission [ ] School Board [ ] Voter Registration [ Other Administrative Appeal 


[ ] Accounting [ ] Aid and Guidance [ ] Appointment (select one) 

[ ] Guardian/Conservator [ ] Standby Guardian/Conservator 

[ ] Custodian/Successor Custodian (UTMA) [ ] Trust (select one) 

[ ] Impress/Declare/Create 

[ ] Reformation [ ] Will (select one) 

[ ] Construe [ Contested 

GENERAL CIVIL Subsequent Actions 

[ ] Claim Impleading Third Party Defendant 

[ ] Monetary Damages 

[ ] No Monetary Damages [ ] Counterclaim 

[ ] Monetary Damages 

[ ] No Monetary Damages [ ] Cross Claim [ ] Interpleader [ ] Reinstatement (other than divorce or 

driving privileges) [ ] Removal of Case to Federal Court Business & Contract 

[ Attachment [ Confessed Judgment [ ] Contract Action [ ] Contract Specific Performance [ ] Detinue 

[ ] Garnishment Property 

[ ] Annexation [ ] Condemnation [ ] Ejectment [ ] Encumber/Sell Real Estate [ ] Enforce Vendor’s Lien ( Escheatment ( ) Establish Boundaries || Landlord/Tenant 

[ ] Unlawful Detainer [ ] Mechanics Lien [ ] Partition [ ] Quiet Title 

[ ] Termination of Mineral Rights Tort 

[ ] Asbestos Litigation [ ] Compromise Settlement 

Intentional Tort [ ] Medical Malpractice [ ] Motor Vehicle Tort [ ] Product Liability [ ] Wrongful Death [ ] Other General Tort Liability 


[ ] Adoption 

[ ] Adoption – Foreign [ ] Adult Protection ( ) Annulment 

[ ] Annulment – Counterclaim Responsive 

Pleading [ ] Child Abuse and Neglect – Unfounded 

Complaint [ ] Civil Contempt [ ] Divorce (select one) 

[ ] Complaint – Contested* [ ] Complaint – Uncontested* [ ] Counterclaim/Responsive Pleading [ ] Reinstatement – 


Distribution [ ] Separate Maintenance 

[ ] Separate Maintenance Counterclaim 


[ ] Amend Death Certificate [ ] Appointment (select one) 

[ ] Church Trustee [ ] Conservator of Peace 

[ ] Marriage Celebrant [ ] Approval of Transfer of Structured 

Settlement [ ] Bond Forfeiture Appeal [ ] Declaratory Judgment [ ] Declare Death [ ] Driving Privileges (select one) 

[ ] Reinstatement pursuant to $ 46.2-427 [ ] Restoration – Habitual Offender or 3rd 

Offense [ ] Expungement [ ] Firearms Rights – Restoration [ ] Forfeiture of Property or Money [] Freedom of Information [x] Injunction [ ] Interdiction [ ] Interrogatory [ ] Judgment Lien-Bill to Enforce [ ] Law Enforcement/Public Official Petition [ ] Name Change [ ] Referendum Elections [ ] Sever Order [ ] Taxes (select one) 

[ ] Correct Erroneous State/Local 

[ ] Delinquent [ ] Vehicle Confiscation [ ] Voting Rights – Restoration [ ] Other (please specify) 


[ ] Certiorari [ ] Habeas Corpus [ ] Mandamus [ ] Prohibition [ ] Quo Warranto 

( ) Damages in the amount of S… 

are claimed 







12/03/2020 DATE 

Timothy Anderson 


Virginia Beach VA 23456 


**Contested” divorce means any of the following matters arc in dispute: grounds of divorce, spousal support and maintenance, child custody and/or visitation, child support, property distribution or debt allocation. An “Uncontested” divorce is filed on no fault grounds and none of the above issues are in dispute. 


Bill DeSteph 

Individually and in Official Capacity as Senator Of gth Senatorial District 


Case No: 

Mamie Locke 

Senator and Chairperson of Senate Rules 


Eileen FillerCorn 

Delegate and Speaker of the House of Delegates 


Susan Clarke Schaar 

Clerk of the Senate 


Suzette Denslow 

Clerk of the House of Delegates 


Virginia Division of Capitol Police 




It is timepast time to make plain that, while the pandemic poses many grave challenges, there is no world in which the Constitution tolerates color-coded executive edicto that reopen liquor stores and bike shops but shutter churches, oynagogues and mosques,...Who knew public health would so perfectly align with secular convenience?” 

Justice Neil M. Gorsuch Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn, New York v. Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor of New York, 592 U.S._ 


Comes now, the plaintiff Bill DeSteph, in his individual and official capacity as a 

Virginia State Senator, by counsel and moves this Court for an injunction to be entered against 


Senator Mamie Locke, Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn, Clerk Schaar, Clerk Denslow and the 

Virginia Division of Capital Police in their official capacities for the reasons set forth herein: 


1. Plaintiff is a resident of the Commonwealth of Virginia residing in Virginia Beach, 

Virginia and is the duly elected Senator of the gth Senatorial District in Virginia. The 

Plaintiff is moving for relief in his individual and official elected capacity. 

2. Senator Mamie Locke is a duly elected Virginia State Senator and Chairperson of the 

Virginia Senate Rules Committee. 

3. Eileen Filler-Corn is a duly elected Virginia Delegate and is currently the Speaker of the 

House of Delegates. 

4. Susan Clarke Schaar is the Clerk of the Virginia Senate. 

5. Suzette Denslow is the Clerk of the House of Delegates 

6. Virginia Division of Capitol Police is a law enforcement agency, with primary 

responsibilities to enforce laws in and around the State Capitol grounds. 


7. The plaintiff restates all previous paragraphs. 8. On December 2, 2020, the plaintiff in his official capacity was advised by Defendant 

Locke and Defendant Filler-Corn that “due to the rise in Covid-19 numbers” the 


Pocahontas Building—the structure that contains the offices of both House and Senate 

members—will only be open for credentialed legislative employees and current 

legislators during the upcoming Regular Session of the General Assembly. See attached 

email “Exhibit A” 


9. Plaintiff restates all previous paragraphs. 

10. The Pocahontas Building is a traditional forum office building open to members of the 

public with a primary purpose of providing office appointments for the members of the 

General Assembly with the general public. 

11. Throughout the Commonwealth, every Juvenile & Domestic Relations Court, General 

District Court and Circuit Court are open and handling business in person pursuant to the 

Fourteenth Order Extending Declaration of Judicial Emergency of the Virginia Supreme 


12. City council and board of supervisor meetings are occurring in person throughout the 

Commonwealth and every government agency is open for in person business and the 

Governor of Virginia is allowing most businesses to operate in person pursuant to 

Executive Order 67, Sixth Amended. 2 

13. While the Governor holds press conferences surrounded by visitors and dignitaries from 

outside the state, the Courts try cases daily, the DMV processes licenses and City Halls collect taxes throughout the Commonwealth, the Defendant’s Filler-Corn and Locke 


Orn al_emergency.pdf 2 https:// Order-of-Public-Health-Emergency-Seven—Phase-Three-Further-Adjusting-of-Certain-Temporary-Restrictions Due-to-Novel-Coronavirus-(COVID-19).pdf 

opine that the only major government building that is too dangerous to be open to the 

public due to the pandemic, is the general office building of the General Assembly. 

14. The closure of the legislative office building to the public is contrary to the explicit 

historical purpose of the building to allow the public access to its elected legislative 

members, especially during the General Assembly Session. 3 

15. To exclude the public from in-person participation to 2021 General Assembly session is 

inconsistent with open access to government and is inconsistent with every COVID-19 

policy operating in every other branch of government at the state and local level. 

16. The Plaintiff, as a State Senator, will be deprived of his ability to conduct vital 

constituent service by meeting with members of the public to discuss proposed laws 

during the 2021 General Assembly Session 

17. Most importantly, the right to assemble and address lawmakers at the state and federal 

levels is fundamentally protected by the 1st Amendment of the United States Constitution: 

a. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or 

prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” 

18. Further, Article 1 Section 12 further prohibits the General Assembly from abridging the 

freedom of the people to peaceably assemble. 

a. “That the freedoms of speech and of the press are among the great bulwarks of 

liberty, and can never be restrained except by despotic governments; that any citizen may freely speak, write, and publish his sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that right; that the General Assembly shall not pass any law abridging the freedom of speech or of the press, nor the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for the redress of grievances.” 

3 Cornelius v. NAACP, 473 U.S. 788 (1985), reu’g and remanding NAACP v. Devine, 727 F.2d 1247 (1984), aff’g 567 F. Supp. 401 (D.D.C. 1983). – Citing “history” and “intent” elements of the Cornelius standard for determining a traditional forum. 

19. Less restrictive options exist such as requiring appointments and capacity restrictions to 

the building. 

20. Meetings with members of the General Assembly can occur in a manner similar to how 

any court proceeding is conducted in the Commonwealth during COVID-19 protocols or 

how a transaction at a grocery store occurs pursuant to the Governors Executive orders. 

The members of the General Assembly nor the public are no more at risk of becoming 

infected or transmitting COVID-19 meeting in person at the office building of elected 

officials then they are in every other public setting occurring every day in the 


21. The Plaintiff acknowledges the COVID-19 pandemic and its implications, however, there 

is no heightened medical basis to deprive the plaintiff or his constituents open access to 

government and the right to peacefully assemble in person, at the public building where 

the legislative body has official offices and where the legislative body regularly meets the 

public during the General Assembly session. 

22. Allowing public access to the office building during the General Assembly session would 

be consistent with how the other branches of state and local governments are handling in 

person meetings with the public on a daily basis in the normal course of governmental 


23. If a constituent can contest a speeding ticket in the Commonwealth in person, then that 

same constituent should be able to exercise their right to freedom of speech protected by 

the 1st Amendment and Article 1 Section 12 of the Virginia Constitution, and therefore 

should be allowed to meet with their state representative regarding policy and decision 

making of the elected body during the General Assembly session. 

24. Furthermore the ex parte decision to close the public office public to the general public 


during the 2021 Session by Senator Locke and Speaker Filler-Corn have not been voted 

on by either chamber. 

25. The Virginia Supreme Court issued an unpublished opinion” in Commonwealth of 

Virginia ex rel. Bowyer v. Sweet Briar Institute, Record No. 150619 (June 9, 2015) 

regarding the issuance of a temporary injunction: 

a. That the primary purpose of a temporary injunction is to preserve the status 

quo pendente lite

b. That “a temporary injunction requires consideration of the requesting party’s 

allegations and the veracity and magnitude of the asserted harm”; and 

c. That decisions on requests for temporary injunctions must be based on the 

totality of the circumstances”; “no single factor can be considered alone as 


26. Plaintiff, as an elected state Senator will suffer irreparable harm if an injunction is not 

granted, in that he will be denied vital in-person contact with constituents during the 2021 

General Assembly Session. Further the constituents of the Plaintiff will suffer irreparable 

harm in denial of access to their state senator and denial of in-person access to the 

General Assembly session. The purpose of the injunction is to preserve the status quo, in 

so much as the office building of the General Assembly members should remain open to 

the public. 

27. The General Assembly session starts in just over 30 days. Denial of the public to in 

person access to its members or access to in person floor sessions is a violation of the 

* As an unpublished disposition, the Court’s Bowyer Order is not a binding precedent. Rule 5:1(1) 

freedoms protected under the 1st Amendment and Article 1 Section 12 would cause 

irreparable as constituents cannot participate as historically allowed with their elected 

representatives. Further the Plaintiff’s same 1st Amendment and Article 1 Section 12 

rights are impaired by denying him the ability to meet with constituents and having 

feedback during the session. 

28. The likelihood the Plaintiff will prevail is high as the ex parte unilateral actions taken by 

Defendant’s Locke and Filler-Corn are in plain violation of the United States Constitution 

and the Virginia Constitution and lack any consistency to how other state government 

agencies are running during the pandemic. 

29. The public interest weighs in favor of the General Assembly office building being fully 

open during session as historically has occurred in every session in the history of the 

Commonwealth and is as mandated by law. The balancing approach test of Blackwelder 

Furniture Co. v. Seilig Manufacturing Co., Inc., 550 F.2d 189 (4th Cir. 1977


overwhelming favor the Plaintiff and his requests to treat the General Assembly office 

building and the members identical to any other governmental building or any employee 

in the public or private sector who is safely operating during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

30. The Defendant’s Scharr, Denslow and Division of Capitol Police are named solely as 

additional parties that are lawfully required in carrying out any order of Speaker Filler 

Corn or Senator Locke to restrict access to the public as indicated in the attached email 

and injunction against them is requested for that purpose only. 

Wherefore, the plaintiff moves for an injunction against all Defendant’s listed herein and moves 

for any further relief as may be appropriate. 

Respectfully Submitted, 

Bill DeSteph By:S

vSB #90917 for


Timothy Anderson Anderson & Associates 2492 N. Landing Rd 104 Virginia Beach VA 23456 757-301-3636 Tel 757-301-3640 Fax VSB 43803 Counsel for Plaintiff 


I HEREBY CERTIFY, that a copy of this complaint was served via email to the Virginia Attorney General at pursuant to the COVID-19 protocols of service. Each Defendant is a state agency or employee, and the single email to the Attorney General should be accepted as service on each named Defendant this 8th day of December 2020. 


USB #90917 Timothy Anderson 



From: Susan Schaar Date: Wed, Dec 2, 2020 at 3:58 PM Subject: 2021 Session To: Senator Private Legislative Assistants Pri Senate Benefited Staff Senate Finance Staff Amigo Wade David W. Burhop Amy Atkinson Hal Greer Kristen Howard 

Senator Locke, Chair of Senate Rules, and Speaker Filler-Corn have determined that due to the rise in Covid numbers the Pocahontas Building will ONLY be open for credentialed legislative employees and current legislators. 

The Main Street entrance will not be available for access. Bank Street will be the only entrance. IDs must be visible as you enter the building. An additional screening station has been installed to help expedite the process. 

The Virginia Department of Health has advised that Legislative Assistant offices should only be used by ONE staff member. This is due to social distancing. Therefore only one LA to an office will be permitted. 

We are setting up a constituent hotline number to take and transmit messages. We will NOT have all the administrative assistants working.. A limited number will be working the hotline service. 

Due to the limited number of people we can have on the mini buses with social distancing, and the cleaning required between runs, we will not be providing transportation from Lot 22. 

We are still working on many challenging details. We will keep everyone apprised of any 

changes and additions as we move forward. Please know that we are doi to keep everyone safe and are working with the House Clerk’s Office on procedures for the building. 

If you have any questions please call me. 


Susan Clarke Schaar 

Clerk of the Senate 

P. O. Box 396 

Richmond, VA 23218