Michael Avenatti (shown), the flamboyant porn lawyer who thinks he has a shot at the presidency, is furiously fighting back against police claims that he beat up a woman.
Again Thursday he tweeted denunciations of the media and Fox talker Sean Hannity, who rightly observed that Avenatti wasn’t much concerned about due process when the porn lawyer leveled false allegations of gang rape against U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
Avenatti claims that authorities have not charged him with a crime. True, perhaps, but the question is whether they will.
Woman Has Visible Marks
Police collared Avenatti on Wednesday near his “ritzy Los Angeles skyscraper apartment,” as the Associated Press described his digs, and booked him on suspicion of felony domestic violence. The lawyer was released after he posted $50,000 bail.
After the arrest, the tough-talking lawyer unleashed a tweetstorm to say the charge is a lie to ruin him. “I want to be clear,” the brash barrister wrote, “ I DID NOT commit domestic violence nor have I ever committed domestic violence. I did not strike any woman nor have I ever. I did not strike my ex-wife in the face nor did I hit anyone else in the face. I am a decent man & I look forward to being exonerated.”
Avenatti claims he’s the victim of a frame-up by one Jacob Wohl, who tried to discredit Robert Mueller, the special counsel probing the Trump-Russia “connection,” with spurious sex-assault allegations.
Avenatti’s two former wives also vouched for him. Both said he never struck them and that he was and is a good husband and father. Wife No. 1 said he “has NEVER been abusive” and that the porn lawyer “is a good man.”
Thursday, Avenatti unspooled a Trumpian Tweet rage again.
“There is a lot of inaccurate reporting out there,” the would-be president said. “I have NOT been charged with anything, let alone a felony” and “numerous other ‘facts’ being reported are completely bogus. Why is TMZ's news "standard" the new standard?”
TMZ is the tabloid website that first reported Avenatti’s unhappy afternoon visit to the county lockup.
Here’s the problem for Avenatti. While LAPD “didn’t immediately disclose details about the arrest,” AP reported, “Officer Tony Im, an LAPD spokesman, said the victim has visible injuries.”
Avenatti vs. Hannity
The arrest of Avenatti, who claims to be a women’s advocate, put the porn lawyer in a tough spot because of the false gang rape charges he and his client, Julie Swetnick, leveled against Kavanaugh on Twitter and in sworn statements to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Critics have said Avenatti didn’t care much about due process for Kavanaugh, and now he’s getting his just deserts. Replied Avenatti on Twitter, “I have always advocated for due process including with Judge Kavanaugh (we demanded a full and thorough investigation repeatedly). Any claim to the contrary is bogus. Many of these ‘pundits’ don’t even know what legal due process is.”
After Avenatti’s arrest, Hannity said the lawyer deserved due process, just as Kavanaugh did. “But one can only wonder if now maybe Michael Avenatti would apply the same standard to himself that he had applied to Justice Kavanaugh,” Hannity said. “Or maybe tonight he would prefer the country give him due process and the presumption of innocence.... He deserves presumption of innocence, due process, let the legal system do their job. And hope and pray that the right justice and answer comes through.”
Thursday night, Hannity defended Avenatti’s due process rights again, but also recalled the false claims against Kavanaugh. “Remember it was he that pushed a phony claim from a client named Julie Swetnick,” Hannity said. “Remember they came out with that affidavit.” Neither Avenatti nor Swetnick offered evidence of her claims, Hannity observed, and Swetnick admitted she had never seen Kavanaugh do anything wrong. Yet Avenatti “wanted to derail Judge Kavanaugh’s life over these absurd claims.... He didn’t give a rip about due process, presumption of innocence. Now, this issue has come full circle for him.”
Avenatti claimed that he has repeatedly asked to be on Hannity’s program, but “you refuse. The last two nights, you have gone after me over my beliefs re ‘due process.’ Have me on and let’s have a real discussion about due process for me & Kavanaugh.”
Yet the possibility of a domestic violence charge isn’t Avenatti’s only problem.
Avenatti, Grassley claimed, provided “materially false statements” to the committee.
Photo of Michael Avenatti: AP Images