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11 Surprising Sci-Fi Actors Arrested for Domestic Violence

"Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country" - Christian Slater

Here are the actors you'd never know were arrested for domestic abuse. Actors often live very different lives off camera. Domestic abuse has been in the news lately especially with the arrest of actress Heather Locklear.

According to the CDC, one in four women and one in seven men will experience severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime. So it makes sense that Hollywood would also have a problem with abuse.

Here are some of the most surprising celebrities with a criminal history of domestic violence.

1. Heather Locklear


Heather Locklear, 56, is a star from TV shows like Melrose Place and T.J. Hooker.  But she also played Swamp Thing's girlfriend in the infamous Return of Swamp Thing movie in the 1980s. She's a sex symbol and seems like a harmless blonde bombshell. Or so we thought.

Last Sunday night in California Locklear was arrested and charged with one count of domestic violence and three counts of battery on emergency personnel. It seems her brother called because she was having an argument with her boyfriend Chris Heisser. It turned violent. After being arrested she kicked the three deputies who tried putting her in custody.

Friends have said that Locklear, who has a history of substance abuse, has fallen off the wagon again.

2. Josh Brolin 


Josh Brolin, 50, is an actor well known for movies like "No Country for Old Men". He's also done a number of superhero movies. He's played Jonah Hex and is set to star in the movie "Avengers: Infinity War" as the Mad Titan Thanos. He's also playing Cable in "Deadpool 2".

Back in 2004, he was arrested on charges of domestic violence. He'd only been married to Diane Lane for four months when the police were called to his Los Angeles home. She called the police and said he'd hit her.  They threw him in the slammer. He was charged with spousal battery and released after posting $20,000 bail.

She later said that it was a misunderstanding and didn't want to press charges. His wife didn't even want him arrested. But in these cases, the police "arrest first and ask questions later".

The two worked things out and got back together again living happily ever after. That is until 2013 when they divorced.

3. Mickey Rourke

Iron Man 2 (2010) - Ivan Venko (Mickey Rourke)

"The Wrestler" star is well-known for acting roles like 9½ Weeks (1986) and played the supervillain Whiplash in "Iron Man 2". He also played the brutish Marv in "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For". He plays a big guy with a heart of gold, but Rourke wasn't always that way.

Mickey Rourke, 56, and co-star Carrie Otis married in 1992. In her autobiography, she said he became abusive after they got together. He even held a gun to her head.

Things came to head in 1994 when he was arrested for apparently kicking and slapping her. Otis dropped the charges and the two reconciled.

She later said the marriage was "crazy".

4. Johnny Depp

Transcendence (2014) - Will Caster (Johnny Depp)

Johnny Depp, 54, is a versatile actor. After successes on films like the 1986 Vietnam movie "Platoon", he played in quirky films like the dark comedy "Edward Scissorhands" and the sci-fi thriller "Transcendence" (2014).

In his personal life, Depp's had a number of arrests for violence. Depp was arrested in Vancouver in 1989 for assaulting a security guard. In brawled with a paparazzi in 1999. But it was the incident with Amber Heard, the upcoming co-star of the Aquaman film, that took it over the top.

In 2015 Amber Heard called the police saying that he attacked her with a cell phone. In fact, Heard also said that he had attacked her many times in their 15-year marriage. An online photo of her with a black eye became headline news. A few days later Heard filed for divorce and then a restraining order.

Heard ultimately dropped the domestic violence charges and settled the divorce out of court. Since the settlement Heard has been a vocal advocate for victims of domestic violence.

5. Terrence Howard

Iron Man (2008) - James Rhodes (Terrance Howard)

Terrence Howard, 48, is an Oscar-nominated actor for his role in "Hustle & Flow". Howard has had a string of hit films. He notably played James Rhodes in the superhero movie "Iron Man".

In Pennsylvania, back in 2001, Howard was arrested for assaulting his estranged wife, Lori McCommas. It started as an argument over the phone. Then it went horribly wrong when the police say he drove to her house, kicked down her front door, and allegedly punched her twice in the face. He says he only slapped her, but it was still wrong.

Howard was charged with domestic abuse and pleaded guilty to the lesser crime of disorderly conduct.

His ex-wife Michelle Ghent later accused him of assaulting her in 2013. She says he followed her into the bathroom and punched her in the face. He says she maced him and it was an accident.

Later he said that he was the victim of domestic abuse and called on children in the future to "end the violence".

6. Christian Slater


Christian Slater, 48, is a former teen actor who's starred in big-budget hits like "Interview with the Vampire" (1994) and "Broken Arrow" (1996). Slater even did a brief cameo in "Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country". Most recently he won Golden Globe awards for the USA Network TV hacker show "Mr. Robot".

In 1997, he was arrested at a party for beating his then-girlfriend, fashion editor Michelle Jonas. He also bit a man who tried to protect her. When the police arrived, Slater hid in a stairwell and fought the police shouting, "the Germans are coming and they will kill us!"

Slater later said that he'd been bingeing on heroin and cocaine, and hadn't slept in days. All the charges were later dropped, but he spent 59 days in jail.

Later he said he "regrets nothing" about his past.

7. Billy Dee Williams


Billy Dee Williams has appeared in critically acclaimed films like "Brian's Song", "Lady Sings the Blues" and "Mahogany". He's best known for playing Lando Calrissian in the "Star Wars" movies.

In 1996 Williams was arrested after allegedly beating his unnamed live-in girlfriend. He was freed from custody the next day after posting bail. The Los Angeles city attorney's office filed misdemeanor charges of spousal battery and dissuading a witness against Williams. The woman later said the incident was her fault and wanted the police to drop the case.

In a plea bargain agreement, Williams was ordered to undergo 52 counseling sessions.

8. Charlie Sheen


Charlie Sheen is a famous actor for a series of successful films such as "Platoon", "Wall Street", "Young Guns", and "Major League". He also played in a few sci-fi cult classics like the 1986 teen revenge flick "The Wraith" and the alien invasion film "The Arrival" from 1996. He also has a well-documented history of drug, alcohol and sexual abuse. That often leads to extreme behaviors but Sheen took it too far.

In 1996 Sheen was arrested for beating then-girlfriend Brittany Ashland. Ashland claimed he threatened to kill her and knocked her out by slamming her head into the marble floor of their home. Sheen pleaded no contest to battery charges and was sentenced to a one-year suspended prison term and two years probation

It seemed like an isolated incident until 2006 when his ex-wife Denise Richards filed divorce papers says he was violent and threw chairs at her. He also threatened to kill her. Sheen denied all charges.

Fast forward to 2009 when Sheen was arrested and accused of holding a knife to the throat of then-wife Brooke Mueller and threatening to kill her. He pleaded no contest to battery charges and got two years' probation and a $2,800 fine

Two years later Mueller filed a restraining order against him alleging “specific and descriptive threats."

Then there’s the dental assistant that said he punched her in 2014. The star insists that he’s the victim of an "onslaught, this barrage of attacks, of sub-truths, and very harmful stories that are about threatening the health of so many others, which couldn’t be farther from the truth."

9. Mel Gibson 


Mel Gibson is the star of numerous films including the cult classic sci-fi film "The Road Warrior" and the sequel "Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome". Turns out he's a bit of a warrior in real life. I

In 2010 Gibson pleaded no contest to a battery charge by his then-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva. This is after the infamous drunken anti-Semitic rant in 2006. Grigorieva claims the actor hit her in the face and knocked out two of her teeth during an argument.

A year later Grigorieva dropped the charges against him.

10. Nicolas Cage


Nicolas Cage is an extremely unpredictable actor both on and off the screen. But he's built up an impressive body of work including sci-fi hits like "Face/Off" and playing the superhero Ghost Rider in two movies. He always bringing surprises. That's why some might be surprised he's been arrested on domestic abuse charges.

In 2011, the New Orleans Police Department says Nicholas started arguing with his wife Alex Kim outside of a home he thought they were renting. After trying to drag her inside he began to punch cars and jump into a taxi. The police officer "immediately observed that Cage was heavily intoxicated and ordered him out of the cab, which prompted Cage to start yelling.''

Kim refused to press charges and he was released on bail. The two later divorced in 2016.

11. Vanilla Ice


Rapper Robert Van Winkle, better known professionally as Vanilla Ice, is best known for his breakout hit "Ice, Ice Baby". 

He also had a brief career as an actor with the box office bomb "Cold as Ice" and a cameo in the comic book movie "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II". While some rappers are known for their criminal rap sheet Vanilla Ice, who grew up in Texas and Florida, didn’t get arrested till after he hit the big time.

In 2001 he was arrested for assaulting his wife Laura. She claimed he punched her while they were driving. He denied he hit her but admitted to pulling her hair out to stop her from fleeing the car. He pleaded no contest and went on probation for a year. Seven years later he was again arrested for domestic abuse. His wife claims the rapper hit and kicked her but later said she was just “pushed”. The argument started because he wanted her to buy a bedroom set. 

Five years later he and his wife divorced and she said the marriage was "irretrievably broken."

Domestic violence is all too common in this world. If you, or someone you know, is suffering from domestic abuse call the National Domestic Violence Hotline for support, resources, and safety.

Call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)

Which is the most surprising from the list?

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