Pregnant girlfriend injured in O'Neal fracas
EmptyRyan O'Neal was responsible for injuries his son's pregnant girlfriend suffered during a confrontation with the actor at his Malibu home last weekend, a lawyer for Griffin O'Neal told reporters Wednesday.
Joanna Berry, who is expecting a baby at the end of March, suffered facial lacerations that took eight stitches to close, as well as head trauma and a corneal abrasion during the confrontation, said attorney Gloria Allred.
O'Neal, who was arrested for investigation of assault with a deadly weapon and negligent discharge of a firearm, has said he fired a "warning shot" to scare his 42-year-old son, Griffin, away after he came at him with a fireplace poker. He said his son struck Berry, 22, with the poker during the fight.
"We vigorously reject any assertion that the injuries suffered by Joanna and Griffin were as a result of Ryan O'Neal's acting in self-defense," Allred said in a statement handed to reporters at the beginning of a news conference in her office. Berry and Griffin O'Neal were to attend the news conference, but Allred said they would not be speaking to reporters.
"Because they may be called to testify if a criminal case is filed, they will not be making any statements to the press in order to protect the integrity of the criminal process," she said, adding that the pair were cooperating with investigators.
Ryan O'Neal's lawyer scheduled his own news conference for later in the day.