04/21/2004 at 12:00 AM EDT
In a Los Angeles courtroom, "Veronica's Closet" actor Wallace Langham proposed settling a hate-crime charge against him. On Sept. 7, Langham, 34, allegedly physically attacked and made anti-gay remarks to an unnamed, 35-year-old man, who is a stringer for a supermarket tabloid. Langham's attorney said in court Tuesday that an unspecified amount of money (reportedly in the low six figures) was put in escrow for the settlement, which is contingent upon prosecutors dropping charges. Deputy City Attorney Michael Pizzuti said on Wednesday that, given the seriousness of the crime, his office opposes any compromise. The man claims he was beaten and kicked by Langham after he stared at the actor's girlfriend at a Hollywood supermarket. Langham contends he was provoked and denies that he made anti-gay slurs. On his TV sitcom, Langham plays Josh, a character presumed to be gay.