Black Lightening Showrunner Salim Akil Responds To Abuse Claims
Salim Akil, Black Lightening showrunner and husband to Mara Brock Akil, has responded to domestic violence and breach of contract allegations made by actress Amber Dixon Brenner. According to Complex, Brenner filed a complaint in late November accusing Akil of repeated "non-consensual assault and battery." She alleges that Akil hit her and forced her into oral sex on multiple occasions, in addition to photographing a sexual encounter without her permission during their affair, which allegedly dates back a decade ago until last year. Brenner also claimed that Akil used elements of her screenplay regarding an abusive relationship to create the OWN series, Love Is. Akil and his wife have been named in Brenner’s copyright infringement suit. Shortly after the allegations surfaced, Deadline reports that Warner Bros TV launched an investigation where they planned to conduct "an inquiry with cast and crew" tied to Black Lightning and Love Is. Akil has issued a statement to Deadline through his attorney, Stephen D. Barnes. He said, "These allegations are deeply upsetting – but they are also totally untrue. We will defend Salim to the fullest against the false and offensive claims that a woman with whom he had a past relationship has included in multiple unsubstantiated lawsuits. Salim looks forward to clearing his name and to being able to focus on his work and his family."