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Domestic Violence Charges Dropped Against 'Rick And Morty' Co-Creator Justin Roiland

Justin Roiland had been accused of domestic violence by an ex-girlfriend, but prosecutors said a "lack of sufficient evidence beyond a reasonable doubt" prompted the case's dismissal.

By Jill Sederstrom
Justin Roiland attends The Game Awards 2017

[Updated March 23, 2023 with news that the charges against Justin Roiland have been dismissed.]

Domestic violence charges against "Rick and Morty" co-creator Justin Roiland have been dropped, prosecutors in California announced Wednesday.

Orange County district attorney's spokesperson Kimberly Edds cited a "lack of sufficient evidence beyond a reasonable doubt,” in announcing the decision, according to the Associated Press. The charges stemmed from allegations made by an ex-girlfriend of Roiland. 

Roiland, who created the popular Cartoon Network and Adult Swim series alongside Dan Harmon, had been facing felony charges of domestic battery with corporal injury and false imprisonment by menace, violence, fraud and/or deceit for an alleged incident that occurred on Jan. 19, 2020, according to a criminal complaint obtained by EW.

The woman, identified only as Jane Doe, alleged that the incident had left her in a “traumatic condition.”

Roiland was charged months later in May 2020 and had pleaded not guilty.

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“I have always known that these claims were false — and I never had any doubt that this day would come,” he wrote on Twitter after the charges were dismissed. “I’m thankful that this case has been dismissed but, at the same time, I’m still deeply shaken by the horrible lies that were reported about me during this process.

"Most of all, I'm disappointed that so many people were so quick to judge without knowing the facts, based solely on the word of a bitter ex trying to bypass due process and have me ‘canceled.’”

He added that he was “determined to move forward and focus both on my creative projects and restoring my good name.”

Roiland created the popular Adult Swim comedy “Rick and Morty” with Dan Harmon and voiced the sci-fi series titular characters. He won an Emmy for the show in 2020 and earned a Hollywood Critics Choice Association TV award for his work on the series last year.

After news of the charges became public, Adult Swim and Cartoon Network cut ties with Roiland, announcing that "Rick and Morty" would continue, just with new voice actors in the titular roles. Roiland had also served as as the co-creator and voice actor on Hulu’s “Solar Opposites,” which was recently renewed for its fifth season. He also had a new Hulu series "Koala Man." The streaming company also cut ties with Roiland in the wake of the charges.

Roiland had also emerged as a force in the art world and sold an NFT art collection in 2021 for $1.65 million. That same year, his first painting was sold at a Sotheby’s auction.

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