A judge has granted actress Christina Ricci a restraining order against her estranged husband, James Heerdegen — six months after she filed for divorce.
The 40-year-old star filed the paperwork on Wednesday, January 20, and was granted an emergency protective order after she claimed years of physical and mental abuse. Ricci claims the abuse started all the way back in October 2013 after she learned she was pregnant with their son.
According to reports, Ricci fears that Heerdegen's abuse could turn deadly. During a car ride in late 2019, she claims he "said something that made me think that [he] could kill me. He said the only way he could feel sorry for me is if I were dismembered into small pieces."
She said that she wanted to file for divorce after a “brutal” attack that occurred in December 2019, but then “found herself trapped in a house with a violent abuser” due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic that has wreaked havoc on the country.
“[James] focused solely on punishing and terrorizing me 24 hours a day,” she wrote in the documents, adding that she “was afraid to sleep at night.” Ricci went on to detail that she was subjected to “severe physical and emotional abuse” by her husband in front of their 6-year-old son, Freddie.
The Sleepy Hollow alum provided the court with photos of her bruises and injuries from the alleged incidents. Ricci detailed two alleged altercations between the pair in June 2020, where she claims he “chased [her] through and out the house” and wouldn’t allow her to call 911. Once he caught up with her, he allegedly dragged her by her wrists into their yard and threw her into a fire pit. Later that month, during the second attack, she claims her husband spit on her, threw coffee and a chair at her.
A judge has ordered that Heerdegen has to stay 100 yards away from Ricci and has stripped him of visitation rights with their son. Ricci also asked the court to grant a move out order to prevent her estranged husband from being able to return to their home. He was also ordered to complete a 52-week batterer intervention program.
Heerdegen’s lawyer has spoken out on behalf of his client saying that he “unequivocally denies all allegations of abuse made by Ms. Ricci as having occurred in 2020.”
Ricci filed for divorce from the cinematographer in June 2020 after seven years of marriage.
TMZ was the first to report the news about Ricci’s restraining order.