Former 'Scandal' star Columbus Short pleads not guilty to felony battery in Los Angeles

Anthony McCartney / The Associated Press
May 15, 2014 10:23 AM

FILE - This Nov. 7, 2013 file photo shows Columbus Short at the Ermenegildo Zegna Boutique opening in Beverly Hills, Calif. Former “Scandal” star Columbus Short has pleaded not guilty to seriously injuring a man during an altercation at a restaurant earlier this year.The actor appeared in a Los Angeles courtroom on Thursday, May 15, 2014, for his arraignment on a felony battery charge. Short has been charged with felony battery that resulted in a serious during the fight at a West Hollywood bar in March. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Former "Scandal" star Columbus Short has pleaded not guilty to felony battery for a fight that seriously injured a man at a West Hollywood restaurant earlier this year.

Short appeared in court for a brief arraignment hearing on the case filed after he was accused of punching a man at the restaurant in March.

The actor's attorney Jeff Jacquet had sought to fast track the case, but Deputy District Attorney David Schorr said the injuries involved were too serious to qualify. He said Short is accused of cold-cocking a man, knocking him unconscious and fracturing his left eye socket.

Superior Court Judge Keith L. Schwartz said based on the injuries the case wasn't eligible for the so-called early disposition program, which could have settled the case before a preliminary hearing in which more details about the altercation would be disclosed.

Short was ordered to return to court on June 5 to set a date for the preliminary hearing.

The case is one of several involving Short and allegations of violence. He faces a misdemeanour spousal battery case and his estranged wife has a temporary restraining order against him. Tanee Short claims her husband threatened her with a knife during a fight in April.

She filed for divorce after the incident, and a hearing on the restraining order is scheduled for May 21.

Jacquet has said Short will contest the restraining order and it will require a lengthy evidentiary hearing.

Short announced last month that he wasn't returning to the hit series "Scandal" for its fourth season.

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Anthony McCartney can be reached at http://twitter.com/mccartneyAP


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