Source: Mel Gibson to Plead in Battery Case
Oscar-winner reportedly will be charged with misdemeanor, has reached plea agreement
Mel Gibson has reached a plea agreement with prosecutors who plan to file a misdemeanor battery charge against the Oscar winner over a fight last year with his then-girlfriend, a person with knowledge of the case said Wednesday.
Gibson will appear in person to enter the plea, according to the person who was not authorized to discuss details of the agreement publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.
Gibson was expected to be formally charged with battery this week, and the agreement could allow the actor-director to avoid jail time.
The charge stems from a dispute between Gibson and Oksana Grigorieva in January 2010.
The Russian musician did not report the incident until months later, after the pair broke up and had negotiated a custody agreement involving their infant daughter.
Gibson’s attorney Blair Berk said in a written statement that Gibson sought an agreement to resolve the case with his children in mind.
“I know from almost 20 years as a criminal defense lawyer that sometimes justice can come for a client at too high a personal price,” Berk’s statement reads. “That is particularly so for Mel, whose right to due process can only be exercised in this case with an enormous media circus attached.”
Berk’s statement did not disclose further details of the plea agreement.
The charge is another blow to Gibson, the star of the “Lethal Weapon” film series, whose reputation in Hollywood took a major hit after a 2006 arrest for drunken driving.
A deputy’s report leaked to the celebrity website TMZ revealed the star had used anti-Semitic and sexist slurs.
His conviction was later expunged.