FBI Releases Statement On Brad Pitt & It Is "Continuing To Gather Facts"

The FBI has commented on reports that the law enforcement agency is investigating Brad Pitt in regards to child abuse claims first reported by TMZ Thursday. The FBI released a statement about Pitt to Bustle Thursday night and said, "In response to your inquiry regarding allegations within the special aircraft jurisdiction of the United States; specifically, an aircraft carrying Mr. Brad Pitt and his children, the FBI is continuing to gather facts and will evaluate whether an investigation at the federal level will be pursued." Bustle reached out to a rep for Pitt when the reports first came out, but did not receive a response.

On Thursday, TMZ reported that the child abuse allegations against Pitt were referred to the FBI. The actor allegedly became verbally abusive towards and physical with his children on a private plane last week. According to TMZ, the claims were originally being investigated by the LAPD's Abused Child Unit, but since the alleged incident occurred in the air during a flight from France to the U.S., the LAPD does not have jurisdiction.

Before the FBI confirmed that it is looking into the matter, the LAPD denied reports they were investigating Pitt for alleged child abuse, per a Thursday report from The Independent. Bustle has also reached out to Pitt's rep and the LAPD regarding the claims, but has yet to receive a response. On Thursday, People reported that the L.A. Department of Child and Family Services was looking into the allegations against Pitt. Bustle has reached out to the L.A. DCFS, but has not yet received a response. However, the L.A. DCFS Public Information Officer told Us Weekly: "We’re prohibited by law from disclosing case specific information or even identifying any involvement with any client."

Pitt has yet to comment directly on the child abuse claims, but "a source close to the actor" told The Independent, "He takes the matter very seriously and says he did not commit any abuse of his children. It’s unfortunate that people involved are continuing to present him in the worst possible light. I think the most important thing is the fact that he is co-operating and that he takes it seriously, he recognizes it is a serious matter and he is willing to do whatever will be best for his family."