A judge on Thursday issued an arrest warrant for the wife of television star Sasha Mitchell after she failed to appear in court for the start of his spousal abuse trial.
Mitchell, 27, is accused of hitting and kicking his pregnant wife on two occasions in their Westlake home in April.
He has pleaded not guilty and remains free on $10,000 bail. His Municipal Court trial was supposed to start Thursday, but because of vacations and other scheduling conflicts on both sides, it was delayed until Sept. 7.
As expected, Sasha did not appear in court, Deputy Dist. Atty. John D. Colombo said.
Still, Colombo said he expected Jeanette Mitchell, 25, to honor a subpoena ordering her to court Thursday. When she failed to appear, he asked Municipal Judge Bruce Clark to take the extraordinary step of issuing an arrest warrant for an alleged victim.
"I don't want to have to arrest a victim," Colombo said. But he said he believes Jeanette is still living with Sasha and plans to leave the state with him in the next few days. Further, he believes she will be a "non-cooperative witness" when she takes the stand.
"In about 85% of domestic violence cases, between the arrest and the trial, the victim does not want to testify against the abuser," Colombo said.
Colombo said prosecutors insist on pursuing domestic violence crimes when victims are reluctant to testify because the victims are typically trapped in an increasingly violent relationship.
Bail will be set at $1,000 if Jeanette is arrested, Clark ruled. He also agreed to hold the warrant until Wednesday. If Jeanette appears in court before then, the warrant will be rescinded, Colombo said.
Sasha Mitchell is a professional kick boxer and the star of "Step by Step," which is popular with children.