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Christina Ricci Files Restraining Order Against Estranged Husband, Citing Physical And Emotional Abuse
A judge has granted Ricci's restraining order against James Heerdegen after she claimed he beat her, spit at her and made her fear for her life.
Christina Ricci was granted a restraining order this week against her estranged husband of seven years, claiming that his alleged abuse led her to fear for her and her son’s life.
On Wednesday, the actor filed a domestic violence restraining order against James Heerdegen, which was granted by a judge later that day, according to legal documents provided to Oxygen.com by the actor’s lawyer, Samantha Spector.
The order alleges that Ricci suffered "physical and emotional abuse" by Heerdegen and includes "photographic evidence of multiple injuries she sustained as a result of three separate incidents since December 2019 and the parties’ separation in 2020."
Ricci had originally cited irreconcilable differences when she filed for divorce in July after seven years of marriage, ET Online previously reported.
In December of 2019, Heerdegen allegedly "grabbed and shoved Christina, slammed a door on her body, grabbed her by both of her wrists, and forcefully pulled her within inches of his face while screaming and spitting at her. He continued gripping her wrists while making pig noises at her," the restraining order states.
Ricci claims that Heerdegen "focused solely on punishing and terrorizing me 24 hours a day" once the pandemic and lockdown orders began. She claimed that in June, Heerdegen "chased me through and out of the house" as she tried to call 911.
"He grabbed my wrists and hands, dragged me, and slammed my body into the fire pit we have in the yard," she alleged. "I suffered cuts, bruising, and soreness of my hip, which still causes me pain today."
On June 25, he allegedly attacked her again.
The filling included audio recordings in which "James can be heard terrorizing Christina, spitting and screaming at her, admitting to violence, following her from room to room, chasing her, and then violently assaulting her before the recording abruptly terminates with her crying that she’s calling the police," according to court documents.
One recording allegedly ended with Heerdegen throwing coffee and a chair at Ricci in front of their 6-year-old son. The restraining order claims "many of these acts of abuse" took place in front of the boy, Freddie.
Ricci claimed the alleged abuse started as soon as she learned she was pregnant in 2013. She said that soon afterwards, she felt Heerdegen "could kill me."
"He said the only way he could feel sorry for me is if I were dismembered into small pieces," Ricci stated, citing one incident. "That night I hid all the knives in the cabin where we were staying. I feared for my life and the life of our son. I slept in a separate bedroom with Freddie, and I locked the door."
Heerdegen must now stay 100 yards away from Ricci and their dog, and he has been banned from visitation rights with their son.
Heerdegen’s attorney, Larry Bakman, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. He has indicated that he will be filing his own restraining order against Ricci, "detailing her abusive conduct fueled by alcohol and substance abuse," as noted in court paperwork obtained by Oxygen.com.
"Mr. Heerdegens' papers will also reflect Ricci's attempts at coercive control through the use of the couple's six-year-old son. Unfortunately, Ms. Ricci has a propensity to utilize the child as a pawn in order to punish and control James," Bakman stated.
Spector called this "nothing more than a contemptible and craven, blame-the-victim litigation tactic by a chronic abuser who believes that by sliming his victim, he will somehow evade the consequences of his actions."
She told Oxygen.com in a statement that this tactic will not work.
"Christina will not be intimidated by Mr. Heerdegen and his barrage of misleading claims – and she remains determined to protect her family," she stated.
Ricci rose to fame in the 1990s while acting as a child in “The Addams Family” and “Casper.” Heerdegen works in film production, notably as a dolly grip on Oscar winner “Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance).”