Rick and Morty co-creator Justin Roiland has been charged with multiple felonies in connection to a 2020 incident involving an ex-girlfriend.

Roiland, 42, who voices the two eponymous characters in the popular adult sitcom, was charged in Orange County, California this week on counts of domestic battery with corporal injury and false imprisonment.

The incident was said to have happened around January 19, 2020 with an anonymous Jane Doe, according to incomplete court records examined by NBC News.


The complete records included interviews, footage, investigations and reports that are largely unavailable to the public under a protective order. An affidavit in support of Roiland’s arrest is also not accessible.

After pleading not guilty in 2020 and being released on a $50,000 bond, Roiland was arraigned on October 14, 2020, and since then has been the subject of several court hearings. He was in court on January 12 for a pre-trial hearing and has been ordered to return on April 27 for another.

His attorney T. Edward Welbourn confirmed that he will have the option of a plea offer, though details remain murky. If convicted, however, Roiland can face up to seven years in prison.

In the meantime, Roiland is still under a protective order filed in 2020 that required him to stay at least 100 feet away from the alleged victim, whose identity has not been disclosed. The order lasts until October 2023.

Welbourn expressed disappointment in the current media coverage of the situation, describing it as inaccurate and looking forward to clearing Roiland’s name “swiftly.”

“To be clear, not only is Justin innocent but we also have every expectation that this matter is on course to be dismissed once the District Attorney’s office has completed its methodical review of the evidence,” he told Variety.

Wall Street analysts are already anticipating the consequences that this incident will have for parent company Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD).

The Street writer Michael Tedder noted a paralleled, deja-vu-like repeat of history when the company was slow to respond to the charges against its actor Ezra Miller, the star of The Flash, who was arrested for unlawful trespassing and burglary in April 2022.

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