Las Vegas police have stated that singer Chris Brown is the suspect in a case involving battery at a basketball game at Palms Casino Resort last Monday. The game took place in a luxury hotel suite, which featured an indoor basketball court, shower and locker room. Costing $25,000 an night, amenities also included “NBA-sized” beds and butler service 24 hours a day. The victim told the police that he had been playing on the court right before getting into a verbal altercation with the 25 year-old singer. The angry exchange escalated into a fist fight between himself and Brown who was joined by another person. Brown had punched the victim, and as he was trying to defend himself from more hits, another person who was with the singer also punched him.
The victim, whose injuries were non-life threatening, checked himself into the Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center, where he was interviewed by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police at around 3:42 a.m. Monday morning. After speaking to the victim, who was released later that day, the police went to the hotel but could not locate Brown. The police stated that they provided the singer with a citation on which to sign off for a battery misdemeanor. This was not an admission to guilt, but rather, similar to a traffic ticket, Brown would need to appear for a scheduled hearing in the Clark County Justice Court. Brown was also offered the option to turn the case over to the District Attorney’s office of Clark County, however he did not respond to either that or the first offer. Las Vegas police in the meantime have continued to investigate but have so far not pursued the other party who had joined Brown in the fist-fight.
Just days before the incident, Brown had begun his residency at Drai’s nightclub which is located on the top floor of the Cromwell Hotel. His kick-off event occurred on Saturday, where after attending the Manny Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather boxing match at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, he performed at the after-party to a sold-out audience. Tickets to the Las Vegas performance cost between $100 – $200. Table reservations at the event began at $2000 for a table for four further away from the stage, while closer to the stage was minimum of $20,000.
Despite his popularities and successes, the rhythm and blues singer, recently named suspect in the Vegas battery case, had been facing legal trouble more than once. In 2009, the singer pleaded guilty to attacking singer Rihanna, who happened to be his girlfriend, just shortly before the annual Grammy Awards. He had been on probation since, which had been revoked briefly following performance in Northern California, for which he did not obtain permission. Other countries, including Canada and the U.K. blocked his entry, forcing Brown to cancel his scheduled shows in each country.
In another incident, which took place just last year, Brown was charged with a felony assault, which occurred during a pick-up basketball game at a 24-Hour Fitness branch. The victim, Malcolm Ausbon, filed a lawsuit claiming that Brown along with three of his friends had given him a beating in the middle of the game. Brown’s attorney Mark Geragos accused the Ausbon of extortion after the victim had sent Geragos a letter threatening to file police charges, unless his client paid him $250,000. The suit was settled about six weeks ago on far less than the original amount in which Brown claimed was mainly to get Ausbon off his back. The amount was not disclosed but was said to be around four-figures.
Since the investigation for the Vegas battery case, in which Brown was named suspect, police have not spoken to the performer. He is expected to celebrating his birthday this Tuesday at a pool party located at the same Las Vegas venue.