Prosecutor to have hearings on abuse claim against Avenatti

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles prosecutors said today they have declined to charge attorney Michael Avenatti with misdemeanor domestic violence but will have hearings on the allegations.

Actress Mareli Miniutti got a restraining order against Avenatti in November after accusing him of dragging her by the arm across a bedroom floor of his apartment after an argument.

Avenatti, who represents porn actress Stormy Daniels in her lawsuits against President Donald Trump, has denied the allegations and said on Twitter the decision by prosecutors vindicates him.

"I am extremely thankful that after three thorough investigations, one by the LAPD, one by the LA District Attorney, and one by the LA City Attorney, the truth of my innocence is now established and no charges are being brought," Avenatti said.

Rob Wilcox, a spokesman for the City Attorney Mike Feuer, said charges could be brought on allegations of spousal abuse or battery after informal hearings in which the alleged victim and Avenatti will be able to present their case.

Avenatti is still under court order to stay away from Miniutti and not contact her.

The Los Angeles district attorney declined to press felony charges in the case in November.

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