After much speculation, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt have been revealed as the subjects of a previously anonymous FBI lawsuit, in which an unnamed plaintiff claimed to have been assaulted by her “then husband” in 2016.
If you’ve been following Jolie and Pitt’s controversial legal battles, you know it’s widely believed that the reason for their sudden separation in September 2016 was an alleged incident on a private jet involving the couple and their six children.
It has long been argued that Jolie’s decision to file for divorce came shortly after a complaint to the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services accusing Pitt of child abuse.
The allegations related to a Sept. 14 plane trip from Europe to the US, in which Pitt was accused of being involved in a physical and verbal altercation with the eldest of the couple’s children, Maddox, who was 15 years old at the time. .
Exact details of the alleged incident have been kept secret, although it is widely reported that Jolie filed for divorce just five days after the flight in question – requesting sole physical custody of the children.
Pitt – who has vehemently denied any allegations – publicly stopped drinking shortly after his divorce from Jolie, admitting during an interview with GQ in May 2017 that his relationship with alcohol had “become a problem” around the time of the split.
And as Jolie and Pitt’s ongoing legal battle has played out publicly in the years since, the alleged incident has again become a topic of discussion after speculation that Jolie was trying to sue the FBI’s decision not to press charges.
In April, Entertainment Tonight obtained legal documents through the Freedom of Information Act indicating that a woman identified only as Jane Doe was trying to obtain paperwork related to the “FBI investigation into a domestic violence incident.”
In the legal files, Doe – who noted that she had “public status” and wished to remain anonymous – recounted a series of events closely related to previous descriptions of the alleged plane altercation that allegedly involved Pitt and Maddox.
“Several years ago, while Plaintiff, her then-husband and their children, who were all minors at the time, were traveling on a private jet, the husband allegedly assaulted Plaintiff and the children physically and verbally,” the documents read.
Doe goes on to explain that the FBI had previously launched an investigation but “publicly announced it would close the investigation”. For her part, she argues that the lawsuit is part of an effort to “better understand the FBI’s investigation and obtain information necessary for her children to receive medical care and trauma counseling.”
Now, after months of speculation, a brand new report from Puck has revealed that it was in fact Jolie who filed the complaint, shedding new light on the alleged incident in the process.
According to Puck’s Eriq Gardner, the heavily redacted report contains never-before-heard claims by Jolie that Pitt physically assaulted her while under the influence of alcohol during the Sept. 14 flight.
The complaint, also obtained by Rolling Stone and Page Six, contains a summary of the interview in which Jolie allegedly told an FBI agent that Pitt had taken her to the back of the plane, “grabbed her by the head”, shook her and “pushed her”. in the bathroom wall,” while yelling, “You’re ruining this family.”
Rolling Stone reported that this altercation between Jolie and Pitt — presumably targeting one of the kids — happened 90 minutes after the flight.
Pitt is said to have hit the ceiling of the plane several times before returning to the area where their children were. Reportedly, the kids started asking Pitt if Jolie was okay, prompting him to reply, “No, she’s not okay, she’s ruining this family, she’s crazy.”
It is currently alleged that one of the children – whose name has been removed from the report – called their father a “dick” and stated that it was he who harmed their family, not Jolie.
Pitt then ran towards the child “as if he were going to attack” before being stopped by Jolie, who grabbed him from behind.
In addition, Jolie said she sustained injuries to her back and elbow. The report also claims she provided photographic evidence of these alleged injuries, as well as journal entries from the children.
Elsewhere during the flight, Jolie told investigators that Pitt poured beer over her “and the blanket she was under” as she tried to sleep.
When the plane landed in Los Angeles on Sept. 14, Pitt allegedly pushed Jolie again after she suggested taking the kids to a hotel to sleep. “You’re not taking my damn kids,” Pitt is said to have yelled in response.
Jolie shared her version of events, reportedly telling investigators that she was “scared” and “feeling like a hostage”, adding that Pitt’s alleged behavior “didn’t feel real”.
A phone call between Jolie’s attorney and investigators documented in the files also indicated that Jolie was “personally conflicted over whether or not to support the charges” after it was announced in November 2016 that Pitt would not be charged.
Despite the FBI’s decision not to press charges against the actor, Puck’s report said that “the agent investigating the September 2016 incident prepared a statement of probable cause and submitted it to the head of the Criminal Investigation Department.” Division of the US Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles. ”
Now it seems Jolie is eager to better understand the reasoning behind the outcome.
In September 2021 – almost exactly five years after her divorce from Pitt – Jolie first alluded to the alleged plane incident during an interview with The Guardian, in which she spoke of an “experience in the United States” that she felt was the rights were affected. of herself and her children.
Jolie said at the time that she had “sworn to remain silent” about the matter, but seemingly admitted that she had feared for the safety of her family during her marriage to Pitt.
“I’m not the kind of person who makes decisions like the ones I had to make lightly. It took me a lot of effort to get into a position where I felt I had to separate from the father of my children,” she said.
BuzzFeed News has reached out to representatives of both Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie for comment.