Not only was Jonathan Majors’ arrest done under racist auspices, but at least one of the white NYPD officers who took the movie star into custody for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend was actively “coaching” her to formally accuse him of abuse, the actor’s lawyer said in a months-old letter that is getting renewed attention after the latest court date in the case.
Majors, 33, was in Manhattan Criminal Court on Tuesday morning for a hearing in the ongoing case, for which a judge set the trial date to begin in August. He has been charged with two misdemeanor counts of third-degree assault, second-degree aggravated harassment, second-degree harassment and third-degree attempted assault for allegedly strangling, assaulting and harassing Grace Jabbari stemming from an incident back in March.
But defense attorney Priya Chaudhry sent a letter to Manhattan Criminal Court Judge Rachel S. Pauley months ago claiming there is an abundance of existing evidence that will prove the actor’s innocence.
In particular, Chaudhry claimed in the letter that Majors’ arrest was “racist” and that the officers involved, who allegedly didn’t recognize the movie star, wondered how he could afford to live in a luxury triplex penthouse. The commentary was dripping with racial connotations, Chaudhry all but said.
As alleged proof to support these claims, Chaudhry suggested in the letter that Jabbari – who worked with Majors for the “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” blockbuster hit in which he starred – was possibly attempting to die by suicide, a circumstance that may have helped the police blame the actor.
“Even though Ms. Jabbari admitted to drinking to the point of throwing up, taking sleeping pills, and having no idea how she woke up in a closet with a cut on her head and injured finger, the police jumped to the conclusion that Mr. Majors (the young, tall, strong, rich Black man) must have ‘done this’ to Ms. Jabbari,” the letter said in part.
Chaudhry previously claimed that Jabbari called Majors “32 times” the night of the incident with angry texts accusing him of infidelity and threatening suicide.
That’s when Chaudhry said Majors called the police to alert them to Jabbari’s threats of self-harm.
Citing bodycam footage, the letter also claimed that Jabbari initially told first responders “‘I don’t know’ nineteen times” when they asked how she hurt herself.
Chaudhry went on to conclude based on the bodycam footage that the NYPD was “coaching Ms. Jabbari to accuse Mr. Majors of assault.”
Read the full letter by clicking here.
Majors is due in court next on Aug. 3, when the trial is scheduled to start. It is unclear based on the content of Chaudhry’s letter whether the case will get thrown out or the trial will go on as planned.
Chaudhry also told Extra in a statement, “Within a few weeks of these false allegations, we provided the District Attorney with evidence of Mr. Majors’ innocence. Last week, we delivered additional compelling evidence to the District Attorney, clearly proving Grace Jabbari’s assault on Jonathan Majors and not the other way around.”
“This evidence includes videos of Ms. Jabbari’s frenzied attack on Mr. Majors and his running away from her. We also provided photographs illustrating the injuries she inflicted on Mr. Majors and photos of his clothing torn as a direct consequence of Ms. Jabbari’s violent actions.”
Chaudhry also emphasized the racial dynamics in the case and asked why Jabbari hasn’t also been charged in the case for allegedly stealing Majors’ jewelry. The lawyer said the police response — and lack thereof — only legitimizes the hesitation to contact law enforcement during emergency situations experienced by Black people.
“It is heartbreaking that in 2023, a Black man should still be afraid to dial 911, even to save a life,” Chaudhry’s letter also said.
What is Majors accused of doing?
Majors’ criminal case stems from allegations made by Jabbari on March 25, when the NYPD arrested the actor outside of his Chelsea apartment.
The two allegedly got into a dispute as they were inside a cab riding to Manhattan from Brooklyn. Chaudhry claims Jabbari “was attempting to steal” Majors’ phone when the incident occurred. Chaudhry filed legal documents in Manhattan stating that the cab driver witnessed the woman with Majors assault the actor around 1 a.m., hours before he was arrested.
The cab driver will prove that Majors did not hit or choke the woman “in any way at any time, or even raised his voice,” Chaudhry’s filing says in part.
According to the filing, the driver also saw the woman, “hitting, scratching and attacking” Majors. At one point during the incident, Majors asked the driver to pull over so that he could escape the alleged assault, the filing claims.
The driver is expected to testify at the trial.
After the incident, Jabbari allegedly told police that she had suffered a broken finger and a laceration behind her ear, but Chaudhry said there is video footage to prove that the woman’s statement was “a complete lie.” Security footage obtained by TMZ showed the woman in a nightclub shortly after the incident with Majors using her right hand normally — the same hand that she claimed Majors injured prior to them parting ways earlier in the night.
The opinion of a forensic medical expert has also been touted by Chaudhry as another way to help put an end to claims of domestic assault against Majors, who will be able to file a civil suit against Jabbari if he is found innocent.
In late March, Chaudhry released a screenshot of a text message to Majors in which Jabarri appeared to take the blame for the incident. She assured the actor that she did not tell the police she was attacked.
“Please let me know you’re okay when you get this,” she allegedly wrote in the texts. “They assured me that you won’t be charged.”
“They said they had to arrest you as protocol when they saw the injuries on me and they knew we had a fight,” she continued. “I’m so angry that they did. And I’m sorry you’re in this position.”
Since the arrest, Majors has been dropped by his reps at Lede and his management company, Entertainment 360. He was also scheduled to appear at the Met Gala alongside designer Valentino, but those plans have been canceled due to the high-profile assault case.
More trouble may be looming on the horizon for the embattled star. On April 19, Variety reported that more women have come forward with allegations of abuse against Majors. They are cooperating with the Manhattan district attorney’s office.
Even before the surprise arrest of Majors, people in the movie industry were reportedly calling the actor an abuser. Those unfounded accusations were trumpeted even louder shortly after Majors’ arrest in a series of tweets that have since been deleted.
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