Suddenly, Lorenzo Lamas' split with his onetime Playmate wife is playing out like an episode of Falcon Crest.

The separation started simply enough for Lamas, who shot to fame in that '80s prime-time staple, and wife Shauna Sand, a former Playboy poser and occasional actress.

On Monday, when the studly actor announced their uncoupling, things sounded fairly typical: "Shauna and I are separated due to problems of incompatibility," he said in a statement. "We have a mutual respect for each other and are seeking the best advice in order to insure that our three children [four-year-old Alexandra, three-year-old Victoria and one-year-old Isabella] are protected and loved."

By Tuesday, he had lodged his divorce petition, citing the usual "irreconcilable differences" as the cause for ending their six-year marriage. The document said the two (who reportedly met on the set of Lamas' syndicated series Renegade) parted ways on October 11.

Nothing out of the ordinary, right?

Wrong. Remember this was a match made on Renegade.

By Wednesday, things officiallly got soap-opera nasty. Lamas, 44, went to court for a restraining order against his ex, and the two traded accusations of child abuse.

Lamas claims that when he announced he wanted a divorce, the 31-year-old Sand melted down and began "acting out violently." When he and daughter Alexandra tried to leave their house, "Shauna began beating me with her fists, hitting me on my back and arms," he says in court papers, adding that he "never struck her back."

The actor also alleges Sand knocked down Alexandra and hurt the girl's arm.

Sand responds in her own court filing that Lamas told her he had "no feelings" for their second child, Victoria, and that Lamas struck the three-year-old on a "weekly basis" and "made fun of Victoria's lisp."

If that wasn't bad enough, Sand contends, Lamas wanted her to become either a male escort or a stripper to bring in money. (What, Lamas' roles in such straight-to-video oeuvres as Undercurrent and Back to Even weren't cutting it?)

Los Angeles Superior Court Commissioner James B. Endman sided with Lamas and granted the restraining order, barring Sand from coming within 50 yards from Lamas.

"This is just an interim order," Lamas' attorney, Cary Goldstein, says. "Lorenzo's interest at this time is just his concern for the welfare of the children." (In his complaint, Lamas also asked for temporary custody of the children or that Sand's visits be supervised.)

Sand, meanwhile, went on Extra and said Lamas closed their joint bank accounts and ripped up their credit cards before springing the divorce bombshell on her. (Goldstein tells Reuters that "Shauna has been extremely well provided for and continues to have access to substantial sums of money.")

This will be the fourth trip to divorce court for Lamas. The son of Hollywood couple Fernando Lamas and Arlene Dahl has three teenage children from previous relationships.

Since Renegade ran out of gas in 1997, Lamas starred in the aformentioned low-budget video releases, had a cameo as himself in the 1999 comedy The Muse and occupied himself in short-lived syndicated series The Immortal. He most recently appeared TV movie Hope Ranch, a Western that debuted on the Animal Planet cable network in September, and was tapped for Fox's reality show Celebrity Boot Camp.

Sand, who costarred in Back to Even with Lamas and made several guest appearances on Renegade, has been featured in such Playboy-sanctioned videos as Gen-X Girls and Naturals.

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