Ryan Phillippe. Picture: Bang Showbiz

Ryan Phillippe's ex-girlfriend, Elsie Hewitt, is seeking over $1 million (R13.3 million) from the actor after accusing him of throwing her down a flight of stairs.

Elsie Hewitt, 21, filed a civil lawsuit against the 'Shooter' actor on Monday, in which she claimed the 43-year-old actor had got violent after an argument on July 3.

The Guess model claimed she went to Ryan's house with a friend to pack up her things after a party which the actor had left earlier after "being ignored" by her, but a physical altercation ensued.

Legal documents obtained by People magazine state: "He grabbed Hewitt's upper arm so tightly that his grip left heavy bruises on her arm hours later. He then braced his body and violently threw her down his staircase as hard as he could."

Elsie got up and claims she walked back up stairs to get her belongings, but Ryan allegedly "grabbed Hewitt, struck her, cornered her, kicked her, and aggressively pushed her to the ground."

The complaint then states the model's unnamed friend attempted to pull the 'Cruel Intentions' star away but couldn't because of their height differences.

Instead, Elsie alleged her former lover then "picked [her] up like a doll and tossed her down the stairs a second time", and that she attempted to crawl down the remaining steps.

She was later admitted into Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre and police issued an emergency protective order, but that expired on July 12.

The brunette beauty also claimed she saw Ryan - who she dated from April this year until July - "repeatedly abusing a panoply of legal and illegal drugs, including without limitation: cocaine, ecstasy, psychedelic mushrooms, and steroids...".

Her documents added: "Phillippe increasingly combined these drugs with excessive alcohol consumption and often exhibited symptoms attendant of poly drug and alcohol abuse, including mood swings and bouts of anger."

A spokesperson for the 'Lincoln Lawyer' star - who has 18-year-old daughter Ava and 13-year-old son Deacon with ex-wife Reese Witherspoon, as well as six-year-old daughter Kai with ex-girlfriend Alexis Knapp - has yet to comment on the allegations.

However, a source close to the actor insisted to People magazine that Elsie was at fault.

The insider said: "Ryan did not lay a hand on her. He wants to clear all of this up and he will.

"Elsie showed up to Ryan's house uninvited and under the influence a few days after he had broken up with her. She physically attacked Ryan, caused a scene and refused to leave his home. As she was removed from the premises, she claims she fell and injured herself.

"There is no restraining order presently in place of any kind. At the time it happened, there was a temporary which was terminated only a few days after.

"She has since tried to seek revenge and fame by sending glamour shots of herself to media outlets with a false story of domestic violence."

Elsie's lawyer, Keith Fink, slammed suggestions the model was seeking fame and money, insisting his client wanted to take a stand against domestic violence.

He said: "She's not going to take a dime, I am not making a dime, [if she wins the case] the money is going to a domestic violence charity."

He also dismissed suggestions she'd made up the story, insisting she still had scars on her leg from the alleged fight.

The lawyer advised a criminal case is still possible as the City Attorney is investigating, and both his client and her ex-boyfriend have already been interviewed as part of the investigation.