“Fast & Furious” star Tyrese Gibson broke down sobbing in court Friday as a judge refused to issue a domestic violence restraining order to his ex-wife Norma Mitchell over claims he physically abused her.
Gibson, 38, grabbed tissues from a box and covered his face crying while the judge read the first half of her two-part ruling.
The judge then closed the courtroom before switching gears to the portion of the case covering the former couple’s 10-year-old daughter, Shayla.
A few minutes later, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Shelley Kaufman released the parties for lunch without announcing her final ruling on Shayla, a court spokeswoman said.
Gibson and his lawyer hugged in the courthouse hallway and declined to speak with reporters.
Mitchell sought the domestic violence restraining order for herself and Shayla in September with claims Gibson pushed her down stairs in 2004, struck her on two occasions in 2007 and hit her in the face in 2011.
She further alleged Gibson hit their daughter so hard in August the child “claimed she could not sit down due to the pain she was experiencing.”
Before closing the courtroom, Judge Kaufman said Mitchell’s allegations unrelated to Shayla were all either “too remote in time” or failed to meet the burden of proof.
The judge said she found a toxic pattern of “acrimony” between the exes but no “ongoing pattern of abuse.”
Kaufman also addressed postings Gibson made on social media related to the case.
She said while “melodramatic,” the posts, including a video that named Mitchell two times, he did not violate the terms of a temporary restraining order.
“He is a public figure who communicates with the public, and I don’t find this was a mechanism to communicate directly with the restrained parties,” she said.
The judge is expected to decide later Friday whether Gibson’s access to Shayla will be curtailed going forward, either through an ongoing restraining order or a modification of the couple’s custody order.
Gibson has denied ever abusing his daughter.
In closing arguments Thursday, Mitchell’s lawyer Aleen Khanjian said Gibson subjected the child to “corporal punishment” so severe it would be considered “illegal in California.”
She called Gibson “erratic” and “unstable.”
Mitchell previously said Gibson flew into a rage and hit their daughter over a misdeed the child denied.
“(Gibson) accused Shayla of stealing her own piggy bank money that she received for her birthday,” Mitchell said in her September filing signed under penalty of perjury.
Gibson’s lawyer Terry Ross argued Thursday that her client was the victim of a “false narrative” perpetrated by Mitchell.
Ross argued Gibson punished his daughter in accordance with Georgia state law during a summer visit to her father’s home in Atlanta.
“He chose to discipline her by giving her a spanking,” Ross said in her closing. “That’s what parents do.”
Gibson took to Instagram last weekend and apologized for his distressing social media posts. He said his erratic behavior was caused by an adverse reaction to medication.