Michael Avenatti arrested by Los Angeles police for alleged domestic abuse

LOS ANGELES — Michael Avenatti, the attorney for porn star Stormy Daniels and one of President Donald Trump's chief antagonists, has been arrested on suspicion of felony domestic abuse, multiple senior law enforcement officials told NBC News on Wednesday.

Officers in West Los Angeles responded to an incident involving Avenatti, and he was detained in the process of taking an incident report, the sources said. He was booked into jail but released on $50,000 bond Wednesday evening.

The Los Angeles Police Department said in a tweet later on Wednesday , "We can confirm that today LAPD Detectives arrested Michael Avenatti on suspicion of domestic violence."

The department said it was "an ongoing investigation and we will provide more details as they become available."

Avenatti released a statement Wednesday to NBC News, denying the allegations.

“I wish to thank the hard working men and woman of the LAPD for their professionalism they were only doing their jobs in light of the completely bogus allegations against me," he said in the statement. "I have never been physically abusive in my life nor was I last night. Any accusations to the contrary are fabricated and meant to do harm to my reputation. I look forward to being fully exonerated.”

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NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JULY 23: Celebrity attorney Michael Avenatti walks out of a New York court house after a hearing in a case where he is accused of stealing $300,000 from a former client, adult-film actress Stormy Daniels on July 23, 2019 in New York City. A grand jury has indicted Avenatti for the Daniels-related case and a second case in which prosecutors say he attempted to extort more than $20 million from sportswear giant Nike. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Photo by: gotpap/STAR MAX/IPx 2019 8/26/19 Michael Avenatti is seen in Los Angeles, CA.
Photo by: gotpap/STAR MAX/IPx 2019 8/17/19 Michael Avenatti is seen in Los Angeles, CA.
California attorney Michael Avenatti makes a statement as he leaves a courthouse in New York Tuesday, July 23, 2019, as he faces charges accusing him of cheating porn star Stormy Daniels out of $300,000 in a book deal. (AP Photo/Craig Ruttle)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 20: Michael Avenatti attends the 2018 MTV Video Music Awards at Radio City Music Hall on August 20, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for MTV)
MAY 28, 2019: Michael Avenatti pleads not guilty in federal court in New York City to all charges of theft, extortion, embezzlement and fraud in the Stormy Daniels and Nike, Inc. cases described below. - MARCH 26, 2019: Federal prosecutors in Manhattan, NYC and Los Angeles, CA charged celebrity attorney Michael Avenatti nearly simultaneously in two criminal cases on Monday, March 25, 2019. These complaints allege that Avenatti attempted to extort more than $20 million from Nike, Inc. and that he committed wire fraud and bank fraud. - File Photo by: zz/GOTPAP/STAR MAX/IPx 2019 3/22/19 Michael Avenatti is seen outside Craig's Restaurant in West Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA.
MAY 28, 2019: Michael Avenatti pleads not guilty in federal court in New York City to all charges of theft, extortion, embezzlement and fraud in the Stormy Daniels and Nike, Inc. cases described below. - MARCH 26, 2019: Federal prosecutors in Manhattan, NYC and Los Angeles, CA charged celebrity attorney Michael Avenatti nearly simultaneously in two criminal cases on Monday, March 25, 2019. These complaints allege that Avenatti attempted to extort more than $20 million from Nike, Inc. and that he committed wire fraud and bank fraud. - File Photo by: zz/Dennis Van Tine/STAR MAX/IPx 2018 4/16/18 Michael Avenatti holds a press conference at the Federal Courthouse in New York City following the hearing for President Donald Trump's lawyer, Michael Cohen, at the US District Court for the Southern District of New York State. (NYC)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 20: Michael Avenatti attends the 2018 MTV Video Music Awards at Radio City Music Hall on August 20, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for MTV)
Michael Avenatti, lawyer of adult-film actress Stormy Daniels, speaks during a Bloomberg Television interview in New York, U.S., on Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018. Avenatti discussed the allegations against President Donald Trump. Photographer: Mark Kauzlarich/Bloomberg via Getty Images
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 28: Michael Avenatti is seen on July 28, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by gotpap/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
Michael Avenatti, attorney for Stormy Daniels, is pictured outside the Manhattan Federal Court in New York City, New York, U.S., April 13, 2018. REUTERS/Jeenah Moon
Adult film actress Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels, speaks to media along with lawyer Michael Avenatti (R) outside federal court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan Mcdermid
Michael Avenatti (C), lawyer for adult-film actress Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels, speaks to the media outside the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California after a hearing regarding Clifford's case against Donald J. Trump in Los Angeles, California, April 20, 2018. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
Michael Avenatti, lawyer for adult-film actress Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels, leaves with a film crew film as he departs the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California after a hearing regarding Clifford's case against Donald J. Trump in Los Angeles, California, April 20, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Blake
Michael Avenatti, lawyer for adult-film actress Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels, speaks to the media outside the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California after a hearing regarding Clifford's case against Donald J. Trump in Los Angeles, California, April 20, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Blake
Stormy Daniels' attorney Michael Avenatti leaves federal court surrounded by news media in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018.
Michael Avenatti (R), attorney for Stormy Daniels, is pictured outside the Manhattan Federal Court in New York City, New York, U.S., April 13, 2018. REUTERS/Jeenah Moon
THE VIEW - On Tuesday, April 17, Stormy Daniels sits down with the co-hosts of The View (11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. EDT) for her first live television interview. Daniels will be joined in studio by her attorney Michael Avenatti. 'The View' airs Monday-Friday (11:00 am-12:00 pm, ET) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Heidi Gutman/ABC via Getty Images) JOY BEHAR, STORMY DANIELS, MICHAEL AVANETTI
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 16: Stormy Daniels and Michael Avenatti are seen outside federal court in downtown Manhattan on April 16, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Raymond Hall/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 16: Adult film actress Stormy Daniels' lawyer Michael Avenatti arrives at Federal Court for the hearing at the United States District Court Southern District of New York related to Michael Cohen, President Trump's longtime personal attorney and confidante, April 16, 2018 in New York City. Cohen and lawyers representing President Trump are asking the court to block Justice Department officials from reading documents and materials related to his Cohen's relationship with President Trump that they believe should be protected by attorney-client privilege. Officials with the FBI, armed with a search warrant, raided Cohen's office and two private residences last week. (Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images)
Attorney for Stormy Daniels, Michael Avenatti (R), arrives for a court hearing at the US Courthouse in New York on April 16, 2018. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen has been under criminal investigation for months over his business dealings, and FBI agents last week raided his home, hotel room, office, a safety deposit box and seized two cellphones. / AFP PHOTO / Hector RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 12: Gayle King, Michael Avenatti, Don Lemon and Sean Hannity attend the 2018 The Hollywood Reporter's 35 Most Powerful People In Media at The Pool on April 12, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 13: Michael Avenatti, attorney for Stormy Daniels, speaks to reporters following a court proceeding regarding the search warrants served on President Donald Trump's longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen, at the United States District Court Southern District of New York, April 13, 2018 in New York City. Cohen and his lawyers are asking the court to block Justice Department officials from reading documents and materials related to his relationship with President Donald Trump that they believe should be protected by attorney-client privilege. Officials with the FBI, armed with a search warrant, raided Cohen's office and two private residences earlier in the week. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
THE VIEW - Stormy Daniels' attorney Michael Avenatti is the guest today, Monday, 3/26/18 on ABC's 'The View.' 'The View' airs Monday-Friday (11:00 am-12:00 pm, ET) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Paula Lobo/ABC via Getty Images) MEGHAN MCCAIN, SARA HAINES, MICHAEL AVANATTI, JOY BEHAR, WHOOPI GOLDBERG, SUNNY HOSTIN
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He also spoke to reporters after his release, saying he has been an advocate for women's rights his entire career.

"I am not going to be intimidated from stopping what I am doing," Avenatti told reporters Wednesday evening. "I am a father to two beautiful, smart, daughters. I would never disrespect them by touching a woman inappropriately or striking a woman."

Avenatti did not take questions and went to his car.

He did not have a court appearance set yet. The LAPD's West Los Angeles Division, which took the report, will take the case to the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office to decide the next steps.

TMZ and BuzzFeed News had first reported that Avenatti was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence. Early reports indicated the incident involved Avenatti's estranged wife, Lisa Storie-Avenatti, but her lawyer released a statement to NBC News denying those accounts.

"Ms. Storie-Avenatti was not subject to any such incident on Tuesday night," the statement said. "Further, she was not at Mr. Avenatti’s apartment on the date that this alleged incident occurred. My client states that there has never been domestic violence in her relationship with Michael and that she has never known Michael to be physically violent toward anyone. My client requests that the media respect her privacy and that of the parties young son."

The LAPD did not disclose the identity of the reporting party or the exact nature of the injuries.

Avenatti became a well-known fixture on cable news for representing Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford. She claims she had a sexual relationship with Trump in 2006, which he has denied, and was paid hush money to keep silent.

The Vermont Democratic Party released a statement late Wednesday announcing it would be cancelling events it planned to host over the weekend with Avenatti as speaker.

"It has been widely reported by the Washington Post and other outlets that Michael Avenatti has been arrested in Los Angeles, California on charges of suspected felony domestic violence," the statement said. "The Vermont Democratic Party has cancelled Mr. Avenatti’s forthcoming scheduled appearances in Vermont, and will be refunding all ticket sales."

Blankstein reported from Los Angeles, Clark and Madani reported from New York.

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