News

Chris Brown rejects plea deal in assault case

Chris Brown rejects plea deal in assault case

CHRIS IN COURT: Singer Chris Brown, right, arrives at the District of Columbia Superior Court in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 8, for a status hearing in a case in which he's accused of hitting a man outside a Washington hotel. The R&B singer was arrested in October after a man said the singer hit him outside the W Hotel. Brown and his bodyguard each face a misdemeanor assault charge. Photo: Associated Press/Manuel Balce Ceneta

By Tom Ramstack

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Grammy-winning R&B singer Chris Brown has rejected a plea deal in a misdemeanor assault case stemming from an altercation outside a Washington hotel, his lawyer said on Wednesday.

Brown is charged with breaking the nose of a 20-year-old Maryland man who tried to get a picture with him in October. His bodyguard, Christopher Hollosy, faces the same charge.

A lawyer for Brown, Danny Onorato, told reporters the deal had been turned down because “Chris Brown’s not guilty.”

He said he expected a date for a trial at the District of Columbia Superior Court to be set at a February 20 hearing.

Prosecutors offered Brown, 24, a plea deal that required him to plead guilty to simple assault.

During the 10-minute hearing, Brown and Hollosy appeared relaxed and chatted with attorneys. Brown smiled several times.

Facts of the argument that led to the charges are disputed.

A police report said the man who was punched had sought a photograph with Brown. Other witnesses said the man tried to force his way onto Brown’s tour bus.

Brown’s attorneys say his bodyguard was trying to protect him when the altercation arose.

Prosecutor Nicholas Cannon told Judge Yvonne Williams he still was compiling evidence against Brown.

“We have video surveillance,” he said. Cannon gave no details of what the video showed.

In 2009, Brown was sentenced to five years’ probation, community labor and domestic violence counseling after assaulting then-girlfriend Rihanna.

Brown’s probation was revoked by a Los Angeles judge last month following the Washington fracas. He was not taken into custody because of good reports on his progress in a court-ordered rehabilitation program.

His probation was also revoked in July after he was charged in a May hit-and-run traffic accident. A Los Angeles judge reinstated it in August after Brown agreed to complete an additional 1,000 hours of community service.

Since the 2009 sentence, Brown has been involved in altercations with rapper Drake and his entourage in a New York nightclub and R&B singer Frank Ocean in a Los Angeles parking lot.

(Reporting by Tom Ramstack and Ian Simpson; Editing by Ian Simpson, Leslie Adler and Steve Orlofsky)

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment

REVIEW: ‘Birdman’ could be the best film of 2014

In this image released by Fox Searchlight Pictures, Michael Keaton portrays Riggan in a scene from "Birdman."

You’ve heard the buzz for Michael Keaton's "Birdman." It’s loud and it's merited.

in Sports, Viral Videos

Nike hype video welcomes LeBron back to Cleveland

14-overlay4

The video huddles the whole city as "The King" returns home.

in Entertainment

PHOTOS: 31 adorable pets in Halloween costumes

Bailey Jarrett and her dog Teddy visit a Dallas-area PetSmart store on Oct. 25, 2014, for the company's annual in-store Halloween event. The event took place at all PetSmart locations throughout the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.

This Halloween is going to the dogs... and cats, ferrets, and bunnies.

in Music

Queen, Fleetwood Mac won’t be playing Glastonbury

fleetwoodmac

The two veteran rock acts were strongly rumored to have been booked as the big names for the 2015 festival.

in Entertainment

Apple CEO Tim Cook: ‘I’m proud to be gay’

timcook

Cook wrote a column published on Thursday and said he hopes that his declaration can help others.