Sexual Assault Charges Dropped Against 'Real Housewives of Potomac' Star, Arlington Restaurateur - NBC4 Washington

Sexual Assault Charges Dropped Against 'Real Housewives of Potomac' Star, Arlington Restaurateur

Michael Darby is married to Ashley Darby, who is a cast member of the show that is filmed throughout the D.C. area

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    File photo of Michael Darby (left) and Ashley Darby (right).

    Prosecutors dropped charges that were brought against "Real Housewives of the Potomac" star Michael Darby after the alleged sexual assault of a cameraman, according to court documents.

    Two counts against Darby, second-degree assault and fourth-degree sexual contact, will not be pursued, prosecutors told Montgomery County courts on Thursday. The charges carried potential fines of thousands of dollars and 11 years of jail time.

    "The charges were dropped by the State because there was no evidence to support them. The charges filed by the alleged victim were baseless," Mike Rowan, Darby's lawyer, said in a statement. 

    Darby, 59, is married to Ashley Darby, a cast member of the show that is filmed throughout the D.C. area. The pair own Oz, an Australian restaurant in Arlington, Virginia's Clarendon neighborhood.

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    The cameraman said in charging documents they were filming for the show at a home on Pleasant Hill Drive in Potomac, Maryland, on Sept. 1. when Darby "grabbed and groped" his butt.

    "As I turned around he smiled and gave me a flirtatious look," the cameraman said in the documents.

    He said he then put his camera down and told Darby to stop before telling his supervisor about the incident. He filed charges three days later.

    Court records also show the cameraman filed for a restraining order against Michael Darby citing the Sept. 1 incident and another alleged assault that happened in August at the L2 Lounge in Georgetown. He said in the documents that Darby kicked him in his buttocks while he was filming. The restraining order was denied.

    This isn’t the first time Darby has allegedly engaged in such behavior. During an episode of Season 1, castmate Gizelle Bryant raised her concerns about Michael's sexuality to Ashley Darby after seeing him "squeezing" another housewife's boyfriend's butt. 

    Ashley Darby defended her husband and called the incident a "joke." In an interview with Bravo.com after the episode aired, Michael Darby responded to the accusation, saying at the time that he "playfully touched Andrew's butt," and Andrew Martin wasn't offended. 

    "He responded as expected with a laugh and we continued to dance with our lovely ladies," Darby added.

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