In the last five years, Jonathan Majors has been one of the most promising actors in Hollywood, with "Creed III" and Marvel films weighing on his back and a perennial place on the A-list ahead.
Then Majors and his ex-girlfriend accused each other of assault, and he found his world dominated by courtroom drama.
Majors has denied the allegations, and the district attorney declared that the allegations against his ex-girlfriend lack “prosecutorial merit.”
The allegations between Majors, 34, and his ex-girlfriend, Grace Jabbari, 30, have played out in public, leading to a pause in his rapid rise to superstardom and drawing questions about his character at a time when American institutions say they are trying to take allegations of abuse more seriously.
The case pits his future — he faces the possibility of a year behind bars if convicted, but Hollywood's sentence could be longer — against a backdrop of "believe women," the movement that seeks to take allegations of sexual and domestic abuse, mostly against men, at face value.
Jabbari, a British choreographer and dancer, is in the midst of a fight that could resonate even wider by providing another successful case in the war against abuse, or by providing fodder for those who seek to discredit "believe women."
Majors was arrested March 25 in New York City on allegations he choked, assaulted and harassed her, the New York City Police Department said at the time.
Subsequent charges stemmed from the alleged incident early that morning. Majors pleaded not guilty to all counts and accused Jabbari of attacking him.
Following that dispute in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan, she was taken to a hospital with "minor injuries to her head and neck,” police said.
The altercation started in a town car, prosecutors said. Jabbari grabbed Majors' phone after seeing a text she believed was from another woman, they said. The text said, "Wish I was kissing you right now," according to prosecutors.
Majors responded by pulling her finger, twisting her arm behind her back and striking her face in an attempt to get the phone back, prosecutors alleged.
The driver stopped, and the pair got out, but Majors threw her back in, officials said. The duo parted ways, with Majors staying in a hotel but returning hours later, prosecutors said.
Jabbari said she fell asleep, but when he returned home, he said, he thought she had tried to commit suicide and was unconscious as a result, according to the prosecution. Majors called 911 to report what he said was the attempt, but when an operator asked him what exactly happened to Jabbari, he said, "I don't know," according to a recording of the call released by the court.
Majors, who was raised in Lompoc, California, and educated in part at Yale University, seemed on his way to becoming one of the film industry’s tentpole talents — those it relies on for box office gold — before his arrest.
He starred in the 2019 independent film “The Last Black Man in San Francisco,” the 2020 HBO series “Lovecraft Country,” “Creed III” this year, and became known as Marvel’s latest menacing villain “Kang the Conqueror” in “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.”
In the wake of the arrest and charges, Deadline reported that Majors was pulled from consideration for at least two film projects, U.S. Army recruiters pulled ads featuring the actor and, according to Variety, he was dropped by his talent manager and public relations manager.
Here’s a timeline of Majors’ arrest and trial on charges of assaulting Jabbari.
March 25: Majors is arrested
Majors is arrested on the domestic abuse allegations. He's released but with a limited temporary restraining order, customary following domestic abuse allegations, limiting contact with Jabbari.
March 26: Charges are filed
The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office files three counts of third-degree assault, one count of second-degree harassment, and one count of aggravated harassment, all misdemeanors, against the star.
The complaint alleges that Majors struck Jabbari in the face with an open hand, leaving her with a laceration behind her ear; that he grabbed her hand, causing swelling and bruising to her finger; and that he put his hand on her neck.
The altercation unfolded in the back seat of a vehicle, prosecutors say.
Majors' attorney Priya Chaudhry says at the time that he is "completely innocent" and that the car's driver and video footage would prove it. She vows that charges would be dropped once the facts emerged.
Chaudhry says that Jabbari's hospital visit was for an "emotional crisis," and not for physical injuries described by police.
The lawyer also says Jabbari had "recanted" the domestic abuse allegations in two written statements. Majors’ publicist, Carrie Gordon, says at the time, "He has done nothing wrong."
March 30: Majors accuses Jabbari
Majors' attorney shares screenshots with NBC News that she says showed text messages to the actor from Jabbari in which she purportedly admitted "she was the one who used physical force against him."
"She also disavowed any allegations that he had done anything to her and confirmed that Mr. Majors called 911 because of her mental condition," Chaudhry says.
April 27: Court issues restraining order
The court grants Jabbari a "full" temporary restraining order prohibiting Majors from contact with her, an order that extends and strengthens the protective order from March.
May 9: Making a court appearance
Majors makes his first appearance in court, via Zoom, according to Variety. It is a fairly routine hearing, but afterward, Chaudhry alleges the case was fraught with "explicit and implicit bias," saying the treatment of Majors highlights the "racial bias that permeates the criminal justice system," according to the publication.
She calls the prosecution of Majors a "witch hunt," per Variety.
Majors opts not to testify in his defense.
June 21: Filing allegations against Jabbari
Majors went to police to make his own allegations against Jabbari, according to the publication Insider, which cites a domestic incident report and a sworn affidavit. The cross-complaint claimed Jabbari was the attacker on March 25, Insider says.
Chaudhry confirms the cross-complaint in a statement. It claims Jabbari had launched “frenzied attacks” on Majors and that his legal team provided video and photo evidence showing the attacks, as well as evidence that Majors was allegedly victimized, such as torn clothing.
From the summer into the fall, Majors’ trial date is delayed several times.
Oct. 25: Jabbari is arrested
She was arrested on charges of assault and criminal mischief and released with a desk appearance ticket, police say.
Hours before Jabbari’s arrest, a judge denies a motion to dismiss the assault case against Majors. His trial is set for Nov. 29.
Oct. 26: Jabbari case is closed
The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office says it will not prosecute, saying the allegations against Jabbari lack "prosecutorial merit.”
“The matter is now closed and sealed,” a spokesperson says. Chaudhry calls the district attorney's decision a "serious injustice."
Nov. 29: Majors' trial begins
The trial weighing charges against Majors opens.
Dec. 5: Powerful testimony
Jabbari testifies that she feared Majors, but that she also worried he would harm himself. She says she believed he used the specter of self-harm to manipulate her.
Dec. 13: Key evidence is released
The judge in the trial releases key evidence.
New York Criminal Court Judge Michael Gaffey earlier decided certain evidence would be kept from public eyes — at the behest of Majors' team.
But on Wednesday, he releases key pieces of evidence, including a recording of Majors' 911 call to report Jabbari may have tried to kill herself; photos taken by Jabbari following the March 25 incident that show dark bruising on her finger and a cut behind her ear; and video from responding officers' body cameras.
The released evidence includes text messages between the two, with Majors stating in the hours after the incident, "Maybe I'm such a monster and horrible man that I don't deserve it [love] and should just kill myself."
In the same exchange, Majors expressed fear that if Jabbari sought treatment for the bruising and laceration, "it could lead to an investigation."
She responded that she would delay the visit, but that it had to happen because she needed pain medication. "I will tell the doctor I bumped my head," she said.
"Why would I want to tell them what really happened when it's clear I want to be with you," she texted.
Dec. 14: Case goes to the jury
The jury does not reach a verdict by Friday afternoon and is ordered by the judge to deliberate into the following week.
Dec. 18: Jury reaches a verdict
On Monday afternoon, a jury found Jonathan Majors guilty of two counts: assault in the third-degree, and harassment in the second-degree. His sentencing date is set for Feb. 6.