Michael Avenatti won’t be charged with a crime in connection with his 2018 domestic violence arrest. According to the Los Angeles Times, the California lawyer who rose to fame after battling against President Donald Trump for his client Stormy Daniels will instead attend an informal hearing by the L.A. City Attorney to determine what happened in November after his then-girlfriend claims he got violent with her.
On November 14, 2018, Michael Avenatti was accused by Mareli Miniutti of physically assaulting her during an argument in their high-rise apartment in Los Angeles. She also obtained a restraining order against the lawyer. Avenatti denied the account.
At the time, the Los Angeles County District Attorney declined to file felony charges against Avenatti, but that didn’t mean that he was entirely off the hook. The Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office was tasked with deciding whether to charge him with misdemeanor domestic violence.
On Friday, prosecutors announced that though they withheld their right to file charges in the future, they weren’t charging Avenatti with a crime at this time.
“The suspect will be informed that although we decline to file charges at this time, this matter remains open and we may file charges at any time prior to the expiration of the statute of limitations,” an L.A. City Attorney’s Office spokesperson named Frank Mateljan said.
Miniutti’s lawyer called the city attorney’s decision an “outrage.”
“It is an outrage that this decision was made, particularly since Ms. Miniutti was never interviewed by any member of the City Attorney’s Office despite our requests,” Michael Bachner said. “It is clear to us that the city attorney simply found it easier to not do its job.”
Bachner told the New York Daily News that someone from the city attorney’s office told him that they believe Miniutti’s claims about the violence, but that they don’t believe they have a strong enough case to prosecute him.
Avenatti took to Twitter to address the decision, saying that he was thankful that no charges would be brought after the city attorney and L.A. District Attorney declined to bring charges, something he says proves his innocence. He also said that he believes every victim should have the opportunity to be heard and have their claims investigated.
There is no better time than now to retweet this story, complete with my press conference, from almost 3 months ago.https://t.co/QNX0FaQNDE— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) February 1, 2019
He also tweeted that he was “coming” for Jacob Wohl and TMZ, who wrote that Avenatti had allegedly attacked his wife, which is false, and went on to describe injuries that weren’t consistent with the ones described in court documents.