Christina Ricci Accuses Estranged Husband of 'Physical and Emotional Abuse' in Restraining Order Filing

Christina Ricci has been granted a domestic violence restraining order against her estranged husband, James Heerdegen, after filing for divorce in June. According to court documents obtained by PEOPLE following, the cinematographer must stay away 100 yards away from Ricci and have no visitation rights with their son Freddie, 6, and must also stay away from the family dog the request Tuesday.

The actress, 40, alleged she was subjected to "severe physical and emotional abuse" by Heerdegen, whom she married in 2013, and that "many of these acts of abuse" took place in front of their son. Heerdegen's attorney told TMZ his client "unequivocally denies all allegations of abuse made by Ms. Ricci as having occurred in 2020." Ricci said the alleged abuse began when her ex learned she was pregnant in October 2013.

Heerdegen's behavior began to make Ricci "feel extremely isolated," as she recalled a vacation to New Zealand during which he, "said something that made me think" he "could kill me." She continued in the declaration, "He said the only way he could feel sorry for me is if I were dismembered into small pieces. That night I hid all the knives in the cabin where we were staying. I feared for my life and the life of our son. I slept in a separate bedroom with Freddie, and I locked the door."

On Dec. 16, 2019, Ricci alleged Heerdegen "brutally attacked" her, but months later, when she told him she wanted a divorce, COVID-19 lockdown restrictions left her "stuck in the house with a man who had physically and emotionally abused me, and knew that I wanted to end the marriage." Once lockdown began, Ricci claimed Heerdegen "focused solely on punishing and terrorizing me 24 hours a day," making her fearful of going to bed each night.

On June 2, Ricci alleged Heerdegen "chased me through and out of the house" while she was trying to call 911. "He grabbed my wrists and hands, dragged me, and slammed my body into the fire pit we have in the yard," she said. "I suffered cuts, bruising, and soreness of my hip, which still causes me pain today." On June 25, she claimed her husband followed her around the house all morning, "screaming at me, spitting on me, throwing coffee at me, and throwing a chair at me" in the presence of their son.


The Addams Family actress claimed that Heerdegen "became emotionally unhinged" earlier this month after learning she had spent time with a male friend, becoming "erratic" and allegedly sending "hostile text messages containing veiled threats to harm my reputation in the media." Ricci wrote that she fears for their son and claimed his father "continues to threaten to abduct" the 6-year-old.

If you are experiencing domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or