Michael Jace, the “Shield” actor who was arrested and charged in the May murder of his wife, pled not guilty and has been ordered to have no contact with his two children.
Jace appeared in a Los Angeles courtroom in a yellow jumpsuit on Wednesday where bond was officially set at $2 million.
His attorney did not object when prosecutors requested the amount for bail, but the actor is maintaining his innocence.
CNN reported that Jace entered a not guilty plea and that a preliminary hearing has been scheduled for Aug. 1.
At the preliminary hearing, officers who arrested Jace and the investigators are expected to testify.
The arrest stemmed from a tragic night that resulted in the death of 40-year-old April Jace.
Officers said that they had never had any domestic violence complaints at the Jaces’ address, but on the evening of May 19, the couple’s alleged quarrel proved to be fatal.
Neighbors called the police after they heard gunshots, and shortly after, Jace called 911 and told the dispatcher he shot his wife.
April was found dead inside the home with multiple gunshot wounds.
The couple’s two children were also still home and it is believed they may have been witnesses to the shooting.
The actor’s father-in-law had also called 911 that night after he received a call from Jace saying he shot his daughter.
“My son-in-law called me and texted me and said, ‘Come get the kids’ because he shot April, our daughter,” he said in a recording that was released by the LA Fire Department.
A police statement said that the motive for the murder is believed to be domestic violence.
A woman who claimed to be a close friend of Jace’s first wife said she was a witness to his abuse in the past.
She told authorities that Jace would choke and hit his first wife.
One time she recalled he “slammed her against the wall while (their infant son) screamed in his crib next to her.”
Jace was also suffering financially at the time of the murder.
CNN reported that the actor filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy in March 2011 and citied debt of more than $500,000.
The documents also claimed Jace was only making roughly $80,000 from his acting gigs at the time.
He defaulted on the mortgage of the LA home where his wife was killed.