Los Angeles - Two-time Grand Slam mixed doubles champion Justin Gimelstob pleaded not guilty to a felony battery charge in a Los Angeles court on Wednesday.
Gimelstob, 41, appeared before Judge Keith L. Schwartz in Los Angeles County Superior court in connection with an October 31 incident in which he is accused of attacking one-time friend Randall Kaplan, who was taking his family trick-or-treating.
Kaplan said Gimelstob hit him multiple times and threatened to kill him.
Gimelstob, who had surrendered to police and been released on $50 000 bail, was ordered to return to court on January 31.
"On the advice of my counsel, I will not be commenting in detail regarding the evening of October 31, 2018 except that I look forward to presenting the true and complete facts concerning this matter, not only about what really happened that night but also about the long history of Mr. Kaplan's behaviour and toxic interference in my life," Gimelstob said in a Facebook post hours after his court appearance.
"This morning I was charged with one count of felony battery. I pled not guilty and I will now mount a vigorous defence."
Although he did not address the charge in question, Gimelstob lashed out at recent media reports on the case that brought up "unrelated accusations" - including the fact that his ex-wife, Cary Sinnott, sought a domestic violence restraining order against Gimelstob in 2016.
Gimelstob said he "vehemently denied" ever assaulting Sinnott and that she used the threat of domestic violence restraining orders as a negotiating ploy during their divorce.
"I am far from perfect," Gimelstob wrote on Facebook.
"I have flaws and have made mistakes in my life; however, I am not the person that has been depicted in the past month."
Gimelstob, who won Australian and French Open mixed doubles titles with Venus Williams in 1998, has retired from playing and now works as a coach and television commentator for the Tennis Channel. He is also a player representative on the ATP Board of Directors.