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Columbus Short pleads no contest to domestic violence, avoids jail

Columbus Short chooses 30 days of community labor instead of 45 days in jail after no-contest plea
Former 'Scandal' actor Columbus Short gets 30 days' labor, probation and more in domestic violence plea deal

Former "Scandal" actor Columbus Short pleaded no contest Thursday on a misdemeanor domestic violence charge stemming from a February arrest, earning himself a choice between 45 days in jail or 30 days of community labor, according to the Los Angeles city attorney's office.

Short chose the labor.

He also faces 36 months of probation, a year's worth of once-a-week domestic violence classes and 22 Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, said Rob Wilcox, a spokesman for the city attorney's office.

In addition to abiding by an order of protection granted to estranged wife Tanee McCall-Short, the actor can't own a gun for a decade, Wilcox said.

Short had missed two previous court dates; he was arrested when he appeared Thursday in Van Nuys.

In April, the actress filed for divorce and was granted a temporary restraining order. McCall-Short alleged that while he was drunk, her husband had put a knife to her throat and threatened to kill her and himself, court documents said.

Short was required to move out of their Calabasas home.

The actor is still on the hook in connection with a bar fight in March, when he was arrested on suspicion of felony battery with serious bodily injury for knocking out a guy who reportedly bad-mouthed his wife. In May, he entered a not guilty plea in that case. 

Also in April -- a really bad month for Short -- the "Scandal" gang chose not to renew his contract option. Short spent three seasons on the drama, which stars Kerry Washington.

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