Jonathan Majors: Opening statements begin in Creed III actor’s assault trial

By Emma SaundersEntertainment reporter

imageGetty Images Jonathan MajorsGetty Images
Majors, pictured arriving at the court, denies the charges against him

Opening statements in the Jonathan Majors assault trial began on Monday, with the Marvel star’s lawyers claiming the allegations against him were false.

The actor is on trial in New York on misdemeanour, assault and harassment charges against his former girlfriend, Grace Jabbari.

Prosecutors allege there was a pattern of psychological abuse leading up to an alleged incident in March.

Mr Majors has pleaded not guilty to the four charges he faces.

In opening statements, Assistant District Attorney Michael Perez alleged a pattern of behaviour by Mr Majors against Ms Jabbari, suggesting he committed domestic violence against her on 25 March and had also “engaged in a cool and manipulative pattern” of psychological abuse in the lead-up.

According to Mr Perez, the alleged incident on 25 March occurred following a row over a phone message while driving back from a dinner date.

Ms Jabbari saw a text on Mr Majors’ phone from a woman which is said to have read: “Wish I was kissing you right now.”

Ms Jabbari allegedly took the phone out of his hands to see who sent the message. Perez said that Mr Majors then began grabbing the right side of Ms Jabbari’s body and prying her finger off the phone to retrieve it. The prosecutor said this caused bruising, swelling and substantial pain.

imageGetty Images Jonathan Majors Meagan GoodeGetty Images
Mr Majors was accompanied at court by his girlfriend Meagan Goode

Mr Majors does not deny that a text message from another woman sparked the alleged altercation.

But his lawyer Priya Chaudhry alleges that it was Ms Jabbari who assaulted Mr Majors, ripping two buttons off his coat and tearing the pocket “with her bare hands” – and not the other way around.

They then went their separate ways and Ms Jabbari ran into three strangers on the street, who invited her to go to a club. She went to “block out the experience,” Mr Perez told the jury. Mr Majors stayed in a hotel for the night and ended their relationship via a text message.

According to Ms Chaudhry, Ms Jabbari later returned to Mr Majors’ apartment and called him multiple times before taking two sleeping pills. He went back to the flat the following morning, where he allegedly found Ms Jabbari on the floor of the closet.

Counter-claims

Ms Chaudhry told jurors that Mr Majors called the police “out of concern” for Ms Jabbari’s mental state because she was unconscious and had threatened suicide in text messages.

Ms Jabbari was initially hesitant but eventually told officers that she had sustained injuries from Majors, who was then arrested. She was taken to the hospital to receive treatment for wounds.

Mr Perez alleges that because Majors “manipulated her and trained her to stay silent” she was hesitant to tell police where her injuries came from.

But Ms Chaudhry told the court: “In revenge, she (Ms Jabbari) made these false allegations to ruin Mr Majors and take away everything he spent his life working for.”

The trial is expected to last two weeks and Mr Majors could face up to a year in prison if found guilty.

His breakthrough role was in 2019’s The Last Black Man in San Francisco. He went onto to star in the Netflix western The Harder They Fall and earlier this year played Michael B Jordan’s adversary in Creed III.

He also played the villain in Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania.



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