A London judge dismissed the case, which was over an August 2022 incident
A U.K. assault case against Dustin Lance Black has been dismissed by a judge.
On Wednesday, The Hollywood Reporter and Variety reported that Judge Louisa Cieciora, who presides over the Westminster Magistrates Court in London, determined there was not enough evidence to convict Black, 49, after he was charged in April with allegedly assaulting BBC presenter and model Teddy Edwardes in an August 2022 incident.
Black, the Oscar-winning screenwriter behind 2009's Milk, allegedly grabbed and twisted Edwardes' wrist during the alleged incident, after which she punched him in the head, multiple outlets reported.
"I am pleased that the judge saw the truth today and ruled in my favor," Black said in a statement shared with PEOPLE. "As the evidence has proven, and I have always maintained, I am completely innocent, and in fact was the victim in this case of a serious assault.”
“This is a moment of exoneration — this case has flown in the face of everything I am and I am grateful to the judge for exonerating me,” Black told Variety outside the courtroom Wednesday.
Cieciora said in her judgment that Edwardes failed to provide "consistent" evidence during the trial, citing that CCTV footage failed to show Black pouring a drink on Edwardes as she originally claimed, the outlet reported.
“She said in her evidence today she could not remember a wrist grab clearly,” Cieciora said in court, per Variety. “I found that to be an odd statement given she had made public statements on social media and to the police this is what happened.”
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THR reported that the judge said "the inconsistencies and weaknesses in [Edwardes'] evidence go beyond simple matters of credibility and reliability to be determined at the end of the evidence.”
Black's husband, British diver and athlete Tom Daley, accompanied him to court Wednesday and was expected to testify before Cieciora dismissed the charges, according to Variety.
Black was initially charged by London Metropolitan Police back in February, according to the U.K. outlet The Times. Multiple outlets have reported that Edwardes posted publicly on Instagram about the incident that led to the charges, claiming that "pretty much unprovoked [Black] threw an entire drink over me."
“I didn’t have a drink to throw back so I did choose violence," she wrote at the time, per The Guardian. "It wasn’t that violent, he got a little tap on the back of the head.”
Black has also written films like J. Edgar and created the 2022 Hulu miniseries Under the Banner of Heaven. He most recently co-wrote the script for the new Netflix drama Rustin.
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