Ronnie Ortiz-Magro is "doing the best he can" amid his ongoing domestic abuse case with ex Jen Harley, according to his Jersey Shore co-star Deena Cortese. While speaking to In Touch, Cortese said, "You know, he's doing the best he can with everything, but we'll always have his back no matter what." She then added that "he was in New Orleans with us... We just saw him."
Cortese also commented on how much she believes all the cast members have grown over the years, saying, "I think Jersey Shore changed me in a positive way, because I learned myself. I think I was a little lost back then, and now I know who I am, and now I'm a mom. … You guys are literally watching us just grow as people."
The charges that Ortiz-Magro is facing stem from an incident that took place on Oct. 4 at a Los Angeles AirBnb. It is alleged that Ortiz-Magro and Harley got into an altercation and that at some point he brandished a knife. The claims against him also detail that he locked himself inside the home with the daughter he shares with Harley, and that when police arrived Ortiz-Magro resisted arrest, resulting in officers tasing him so that he could be detained.
"Suspect (Ortiz-Magro) told victim (Harley) he was going to kill her. Suspect pushed victim out the house. Suspect ran after victim," a police report of the incident read. "Victim knocked on neighbor's door and set baby on ground. Suspect grabbed baby and dragged victim to the ground. Suspect punched victim with closed fist on face, causing visible injury."
Ortiz-Magro's attorney Scott E. Leemon has issued a statement on the arrest and subsequent charges, saying, "The facts and circumstances around Ronnie's arrest have been misreported and exaggerated, like we mentioned in the past. We are happy the District Attorney's refused to file any charges and we look forward to addressing this matter with [the] City Attorney; until then, we will make no further comment."
In a previous, separate statement issued by Leemon, the attorney stated, "The reporting of the alleged incident relating to Ronnie Magro this morning is based upon pure speculation and innuendo. We are currently conducting our own investigation and will have no further comment until that has been concluded."
Notably, Cortese is not the only Jersey Shore star to come to Ortiz-Magro's defense, as both Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi and Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino claimed that they believe Harley staged the photos of bruises she allegedly obtained during the altercation.
"I feel like she went out intentionally to get a photo of her. … She wants it to be a thing. She wants to show off her bruises. We don't know how she got the bruises," Polizzi said on her podcast, It's Happening With Snooki & Joey.
Sorrentino added, "There are three sides to a story — his side, her side and the truth. I don't really know what happened, but we have to speak to him first to get his truth, and then we can guide him going forward and put these mistakes behind [us]."