Brian Bonsall gets two years for assaulting his girlfriend

By Pete Norman
Updated September 04, 2007 07:00 AM

A former child star from sitcom Family Ties has been placed on probation after assaulting his girlfriend.

Brian Bonsall, 25, who played Andy Keaton in the TV series, reached an agreement with prosecutors and was given two years probation Friday, according to the Associated Press.

Bonsall was arrested in Boulder, Colo., on March 28 on charges of second-degree assault and false imprisonment, the AP reported.

His girlfriend told officers he poured an alcoholic drink on her face as she slept, put her in a chokehold and threw her onto a bed. But Bonsall told police he acted in self-defense when she cut his arm and face with a steak knife, which she denied.

In his deal with prosecutors, Bonsall, who was raised in Torrance, Calif., pleaded guilty to third-degree assault but three other charges against him were dismissed.

Bonsall’s attorney, Paul McCormick, said his client completed a 30-day rehab program and has been clean for more than five months. Prosecutor Peter Maguire said Bonsall has been compliant with sobriety monitoring, has gotten back together with his girlfriend and the pair are in counselling.

As a youngster, Bonsall appeared in three seasons of Family Ties, the ’80s NBC sitcom of Michael J. Fox fame. Bonsall later appeared in several episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation in the early ’90s before he dropped from sight.

On his MySpace page, Bonsall has a photo showing a neck tattoo, says he drinks and smokes, describes his occupation as “entertainer”, mood as “drunk” and lists his status as single.

Last updated in late July, Bonsall’s page reads:

“Yeah so I did a little bit of acting when I was a kid, sue me. Hit me up and I’ll write you back, but I’m never on here.”