Kiefer Sutherland turned himself in to New York authorities Thursday afternoon and was charged with third-degree assault, according to the NYPD. The charge stems from an incident that transpired early Tuesday morning in which the star of Fox’s 24 allegedly head-butted fashion designer Jack McCollough at a Manhattan nightclub. Sutherland arrived at the 1st Precinct Police Department around 4 p.m. and was issued a “desk appearance ticket,” which means the actor will be released and will be allowed to travel until his arraignment on June 22.
It’s unclear if Thursday’s assault charge will be considered aviolation of Sutherland’s probation for a 2007 DUI conviction in Los Angeles (for which he served 48 days in jail), which states that the actor must”obey all laws.” According to Laurie Levenson, a professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, the court has broad discretion in interpreting Sutherland’s probation. “It doesn’t mean that every time somebody does something wrong, they’re going to have their probation revoked,” says Levenson, who adds that Sutherland could receive anything from a stern warning to a night in jail to the maximum sentence for probation violation. Sutherland’s rep was unavailable for comment. 24‘s network and studio, 20th Century Fox TV, had no comment. Sources close to the show do not believe that the situation will impact production at this time; season 8 is expected to begin filming on May 27. (Additional reporting by Dan Snierson)