A court document filed by Angelina Jolie alleges that on a 2016 flight, Brad Pitt grabbed her by the head and shook her, then choked one of her children and hit another when they tried to defend her.
The descriptions of the alleged abuse on the private flight, filed Tuesday, are part of a complaint filed by Jolie amid the couple's dispute over a house and vineyard they owned in France that is being prosecuted separately from her husband. divorce, requested by the actress shortly after the incident.
A representative for Pitt, who was not authorized to speak publicly, strongly denied Jolie's accusations, calling them "another rehash that only hurts the family."
The allegations of abuse on the plane were first made public shortly after the flight, but the reports were initially vague and details were kept confidential in divorce filings and investigations by the FBI and the Department of Children's and Children's Services. Los Angeles County families, both authorities concluded that no action was necessary against Pitt.
A judge awarded Pitt joint custody of the children on equal terms with Jolie after a closed-door trial in which the accusations were aired. But an appeals court disqualified the private judge for failing to disclose potential conflicts of interest on a motion filed by Jolie, overturning the decision.
More details about the allegations were revealed this year when Jolie's lawsuit against the FBI over an Access to Information request became public.
The New York Times first reported on the complaint.
The document notes that on September 14, 2016, Jolie, Pitt and their six children were traveling from the Chateau Miraval vineyard to Los Angeles.
“Pitt's aggressive behavior began even before the family arrived at the airport, Pitt had a confrontation with one of the sons. After the flight took off, Jolie approached Pitt and asked him what was wrong," the document states. "Pitt accused her of being too deferential to her children and verbally attacked her."
Then, she says, “he pulled her into the bathroom and started yelling at her. Pitt grabbed Jolie by the head and shook her from her, after which she grabbed her shoulders and shook her again before pushing her against the bathroom wall."
One of the sons, who were between the ages of 8 and 15 at the time, verbally defended Jolie, the lawsuit states, and Pitt responded.
“Pitt lunged at his own son and Jolie grabbed him from behind to stop him. To get Jolie off his back, Pitt fell backwards onto the plane's seats, injuring Jolie's back and elbow," the document states. “The children ran and bravely tried to protect themselves. Before finishing, Pitt suffocated one of the minors and punched another in the face."
The document states that Pitt then spilled beer on Jolie and red wine on the minors.
Jolie recounted what happened on the flight to two FBI investigators in the days that followed. Her testimony appeared heavily redacted in a report that was released by the agency.
It included a photo of a bruise on Jolie's elbow and a "chafe burn"-like injury on her hand. In the report, Jolie said she had seen Pitt take two or three drinks, but she said he did not appear to be intoxicated and was able to speak.
Investigators met with federal prosecutors and said "all parties agreed that no criminal charges would be filed in this case," the report said.
A statement from the FBI states that it "conducted a review of the circumstances and will not pursue the investigation."
Jolie, the 47-year-old Oscar-winning actress and director, and Pitt, the 58-year-old Oscar-winning actor and producer, were one of Hollywood's most prominent couples for 12 years.
They had been a couple for nearly a decade when they married in 2014. Jolie filed for divorce in 2016, and a judge declared them single in 2019, but the divorce case is not over as guardianship and financial issues are still in dispute. .