Colorado prosecutors weighing Charlie Sheen charges
By Steve Gorman
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Prosecutors in Colorado are unlikely to decide until February whether to bring formal charges against actor Charlie Sheen stemming from his domestic violence arrest on Christmas Day, a deputy district attorney said on Monday.
The star of the hit CBS television sitcom "Two and a Half Men" was arrested Friday in the ski resort of Aspen, Colorado, on suspicion of second-degree assault and menacing -- both felony offenses -- and a misdemeanor count of criminal mischief.
Police said all three counts were "coupled with domestic violence components," and the chief deputy district attorney for Pitkin County, Arnold Mordkin, said the menacing charge entails the alleged use of a weapon in a threatening manner.
Neither Mordkin nor police have identified the person whom Sheen is accused of assaulting, nor the weapon he was suspected of brandishing. But various Internet news accounts say Sheen's wife, Brooke Mueller, was the alleged victim of what was essentially a shoving incident.
According to the celebrity website TMZ.com, Mueller, who is the actor's third wife, called the 911 emergency line claiming Sheen assaulted her, but Sheen told authorities that his spouse was the aggressor and that he was merely fending her off.
TMZ also said Mueller was drunk at the time, that she initially had told police that Sheen threatened her with a knife but later recanted much of her story.
Sheen was released from jail Friday night on $8,500 bail. Mordkin said a decision about charges is unlikely to be made before February 8, when Sheen is due back in court in Aspen.
The 44-year-old actor returned to the Los Angeles area Christmas night, according to his spokesman, Stan Rosenfield, who said Sheen's family had been vacationing together in Aspen.
Sheen and Mueller, 32, married in May 2008 and had twin sons in April 2009.
Sheen, whose film credits include "Platoon" and "Wall Street," is best known for his starring role as a womanizing Malibu bachelor on the bawdy CBS sitcom "Two and a Half Men," one of television's top-rated shows.
His arrest is not the first time he has been accused of man-handling women. He pleaded no contest to a battery charge in 1997 in connection with an attack on his then-girlfriend.
And his second wife, actress Denise Richards, obtained a restraining order against Sheen in 2006, claiming he had been physically abusive toward her. Their four-year marriage ended that year in divorce.
(Editing by Jill Serjeant)