Columbus Short Leaving ABC Show ‘Scandal’ Amid Spousal Abuse Claims

The 31-year-old actor released a statement Friday saying he would not be returning to the hit ABC drama for its next season, a month after the actor was arrested on a felony battery charge.

Short played lawyer Harrison Wright in the series starring Kerry Washington. His character was last seen in grave jeopardy in the explosive season finale.  Photo: Javier Fernandez/ Flickr

Short played lawyer Harrison Wright in the series starring Kerry Washington. His character was last seen in grave jeopardy in the explosive season finale. Photo: Javier Fernandez/ Flickr

The star of the ABC hit-series “Scandal” is leaving the show amid personal drama, as his wife filed for divorce earlier this month. The actor is the second “Scandal” cast member to exit the series between seasons. “Lost” alum Henry Ian Cusick left the show after the first season.

“At this time I must confirm my exit from a show I’ve called home for three years, with what is the most talented ensemble on television today. I would like to first thank Shonda Rhimes for the opportunity to work with such an amazing cast,” Short said in a statement given to The Hollywood Reporter.

“Thank you Gladiators, who have supported me throughout my entire career and of course to ABC and Shondaland for allowing me to play such a pivotal role in the Scandal series. I have enjoyed every single minute of it. Everything must come to an end, and unfortunately the time has come for Harrison Wright to exit the canvas.

“I wish nothing but the best for Shonda, Kerry [Washington] and the rest of the cast, who have become like a second family to me in such a short amount of time. For this, I will forever be grateful.”

ABC, owned by Walt Disney Co., did not comment on Short’s exit from the salacious political drama from hit show creator Shonda Rhimes, which ended its third season last week. However, a source who works on the show told E!Online that it was not Short’s decision to leave and that the choice was made for “creative purposes.”

The actor’s announcement about his decision to exit the Emmy-award-winning show comes amid his own share of scandals in his personal life.

Accordint to TMZ report, his wife Tanee McCall filled for a restraining order against her husband after the April 7 domestic disturbance in which Short is also accused of choking her while accusing her of sleeping with other men.

“He then pinned me on the couch and began to choke me. He placed the knife close to my neck and threatened to kill me and then kill himself,” she wrote in an April request for a restraining order against Short.

“He insisted that we play a game he called ‘Truth or Truth’ and told me if I lied to him he was going to stab me in the leg… He placed the knife next to my throat two more times and again threatened to kill both of us.”

Tanee Short, who married the “Scandal” star in July 2005 and separated from him April 7, since filed for divorce citing irreconcilable differences and requested full legal and physical custody of the couple’s 2-year-old daughter, Ayala. Short has pleaded not guilty to the charge of misdemeanor spousal battery.

Short’s most recent arrest followed a spate of other ugly incidents. In February, he was arrested and accused of attacking his wife in front of their children, and again two weeks later for pushing her in a separate incident. Then Short was busted a month later for allegedly punching a guest at an engagement party.

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