Lawyer Michael Avenatti, who has famously represented clients such as Stormy Daniels in her lawsuit against President Donald Trump, has been arrested on allegations of domestic violence. Speaking to reporters on Wednesday after posting a $50,000 bail, Avenatti unequivocally denied the claim as baseless.
“I have never struck a woman. I never will strike a woman. I have been an advocate for women’s rights my entire career,” he said. In a tweet sent out on Thursday, Avenatti suggested that far-right conspiracy theorist Jacob Wohl was behind the allegation.
According to an initial report from TMZ, the lawyer’s arrest stemmed from a felony domestic violence report filed by his “estranged wife” and a statement given to The Associated Press by LAPD spokesman Officer Tony Im claimed that the alleged victim in the case had visible injuries. But a statement from Avenatti’s ex-wife, Lisa Storie-Avenatti, said that she was not with Avenatti the night of the alleged incident and that “there has never been domestic violence in her relationship with Michael and that she has never known Michael to be physically violent toward anyone.”
Avenatti, who has openly speculated about running for president in 2020, is currently facing an investigation from the Justice Department for allegedly attempting to mislead the Senate Judiciary Committee during the Brett Kavanaugh hearings. One of his clients during the hearings, Julie Swetnick, appeared to contradict aspects of her sworn statement — and another witness cited in the hearings claimed that the lawyer deliberately “twisted” her words.
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