'Shield' Actor Michael Jace Pleads Not Guilty to Murder Charge

Michael Jace
Michael Jace
 AP

Actor Michael Jace pleaded not guilty to a murder charge Wednesday in the shooting death of his wife in their Los Angeles home.

In addition, a judge ordered defendant Jace to stay away from his two young children and not contact them if he is eventually released on $2 million bail. He is due back in court Aug. 1 for the possible start of a preliminary hearing. 
 
 
The actor, who played a police officer on the television series The Shield, did not enter a plea during his initial court appearance last month. Police say Jace shot his wife, April, multiple times in the family's Los Angeles home May 19 while their young children were present. The boys were unharmed and are living with relatives.

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Police have not released a motive for the slaying, but have said they are looking into whether financial or other domestic issues may have been involved. Jace's attorneys have said the case is still in its early stages and their investigation is ongoing.

April Jace's family has called her death a senseless act of domestic violence.

Police say Jace called 911 to report the killing. Audio of Jace's call has not been released, but fire officials released a 911 call from the victim's father earlier this month in which he says the actor told him he had shot his wife.

"My son-in-law called me, and (texted) me, and said come get the kids because he shot April, our daughter," the caller, whose name was redacted from the audio, told a fire department dispatcher.

April Jace, 40, a financial aid counselor at Biola University, had three sons, including two boys under the age of 10 with Jace.

Michael Jace also appeared on the show Southland and had small roles in the movies Planet of the Apes, Boogie Nights and Forrest Gump.

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