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Jonathan Majors sentenced to probation, avoids jail time for assaulting ex-girlfriend

Alexandra Del Rosario – Los Angeles Times (TNS)

Jonathan Majors, the once in-demand actor best known for “Creed III” and “Ant-man and the Wasp: Quantumania,” was sentenced to probation after he was found guilty last year of assault and harassment of ex-girlfriend Grace Jabbari.

Majors, who was poised to be the big bad in the next phase of the Marvel cinematic universe, was sentenced on Monday and will avoid jail time, the Associated Press reported. Prior to his sentencing, the actor was facing a maximum sentence of one year in prison.

New York judge Michael Gaffey, who oversaw the December trial, also ordered Majors to complete a 52-week in-person batterer’s intervention program. He must also continue with his mental health therapy.

The actor’s sentencing, initially set for early February, was postponed due to motions filed by his legal team. Last week, a New York judge rejected this attorneys’ motion to overturn the verdict.

A legal representative for Majors did not immediately respond to The Times’ request for comment on Monday.

Ross Kramer an attorney for Jabbari called Monday’s decision “a serious sentence, which is appropriate because this was a very serious crime,” in a statement shared with The Times. Kramer’s statement also said Jabbari spoke about the lasting effects of Majors’ behavior in court on Monday.

“This is the norm: the impact of domestic violence often lasts far beyond the end of the relationship,” the statement added, before praising Jabbari for speaking out about the alleged abuse she faced from her ex-boyfriend.

The missive added: “Hopefully, her example will empower other survivors to break their silence and hold their abusers accountable.”

In December, Majors was found guilty in a split verdict of assault in the third degree and harassment in the second degree after a fiery two-week trial. He was also acquitted on two counts of assault and harassment against Jabbari.

The 34-year-old actor’s high-profile domestic violence case brought his quick ascent to Hollywood stardom to a screeching halt as studios shelved upcoming film projects starring Majors, publicity and management firms reportedly dropped the actor and he was cut from ad campaigns.

Shortly after his guilty verdict, Marvel cut ties with Majors but did not share additional details behind its decision.

Majors’ attorney Priya Chaudhry said that she was “disappointed” with the actor’s guilty verdict but that her client was maintaining a positive outlook amid his legal defeat.

Prosecutors alleged that Majors assaulted Jabbari in New York City on the evening of March 24, 2023, after she read a romantic message that was sent to his phone by another woman. The actor, who was arrested the day after the dispute, allegedly grabbed Jabbari’s hand so hard that he fractured her middle finger and also allegedly struck her face with an open hand and pushed her into a vehicle. She was hospitalized for minor injuries. The March incident was a culmination of Majors’ “cruel and manipulative pattern of psychological and physical abuse,” prosecutors said during opening statements.

Manhattan Dist. Atty. Alvin Bragg said in a December statement that the evidence against Majors “illustrated a cycle of psychological and emotional abuse, and escalating patterns of coercion far too common across the many intimate partner violence cases.”

The December statement added: “A jury determined that pattern of abuse and coercion culminated with Mr. Majors assaulting and harassing his girlfriend. We thank the jury for its service and the survivor for bravely telling her story despite having to relive her trauma on the stand.”

Majors received his sentence a month after Jabbari filed a civil lawsuit accusing the actor of battery, assault, defamation, infliction of emotional distress and malicious prosecution. The lawsuit hinges on Majors’ alleged “pattern of pervasive domestic abuse that began in 2021 and extended through 2023,” according to the complaint, which was reviewed by The Times.

Jabbari’s suit details several alleged incidents of domestic violence by Majors — some of which were outlined in last year’s trial. The complaint also alleges that the actor “intentionally made knowingly false statements” about the events of their March 2023 dispute when he broke his silence in an interview with ABC News.

“The false statements that Majors made personally, and through his authorized agent Chaudhry, not only called (Jabbari’s) truthfulness and integrity into question, but also exposed her to public hatred, contempt, ridicule, and disgrace,” the lawsuit says.

Jabbari requested a jury trial and is seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.

Before his March 2023 arrest, Majors was seemingly on a fast track to significant Hollywood stardom after his turn in the critically acclaimed 2019 film “The Last Black Man in San Francisco.” In the years after his breakout, Majors led HBO’s Emmy-winning “Lovecraft Country” — which earned him a Primetime Emmy nomination — and starred in Spike Lee‘s “Da 5 Bloods.”

In recent years, Majors entered the Marvel Cinematic Universe as one of its key villains, appearing in the TV series “Loki” and the film “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.” His credits also include the films “Devotion,” “The Harder They Fall” and “White Boy Rick.”

He was set to star in the bodybuilder drama “Magazine Dreams,” but Disney removed the film from its theatrical release calendar amid his assault allegations. In January, the actor was also booted from the sports film “48 Hours in Vegas,” which would have seen him play basketball star Dennis Rodman.

Majors, who did not testify during the December trial, reacted to the verdict weeks later in January in a sit-down interview with ABC News, which is owned by Disney. Amid the professional fallout, Majors said, “I pray I do” bounce back.

“It’s God’s plan and God’s timing,” he said.

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(Former Times staff writer Jonah Valdez contributed to this report.)

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©2024 Los Angeles Times. Visit at latimes.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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