D.A. Still Waiting for Chris Brown Evidence, Arraignment May Be Postponed

D.A. expects police to hand over case next week amid report that R&B singer has begun anger-management classes

By Ken Baker, Whitney English Feb 26, 2009 12:56 AMTags
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Chris Brown was a no-show at the Grammys. Now it looks like his next scheduled appearance might be off, too.

An initial arraignment date was set for March 5 following his arrest earlier this month for his altercation with Rihanna. But that court appearance "may not happen,” Los Angeles district attorney spokeswoman Jane Robison tells E! News.

“We don’t have the evidence yet. [Los Angeles police detectives] are still investigating,” says Robison, who doesn’t expect her office to receive the case until at least next week.

“If [detectives] determine they need more time they’ll set a new date for him to come into court,” says Robison.

Once the LAPD finishes its investigation and presents the D.A. with the evidence, Robison says prosecutors must decide whether to file felony charges, reject the charges if the evidence is insufficient, or refer the case to the city attorney’s office if they decide the behavior was simply a misdemeanor violation.

Depending on the decision, Brown may not even have to appear in court. “He only has to come back if and when we file charges,” says Robison.

On Wednesday, an LAPD source also told E! News, “The D.A. is being even more thorough than usual with this case. They don’t want to mess it up.”

Prosecutors ordered the LAPD to seek evidence for a variety of felonies, including domestic violence, assault resulting in great bodily injury and—based on specific allegations made by Rihannaeven attempted murder, a source close to the investigation told E! News.

But as they build their case, the source says, prosecutors fear that making any serious felony charges stick could prove difficult in a case where there are no direct witnesses other than Rihanna and Brown.

Brown was booked on suspicion of making a criminal threat and remains free on bail.

He released a statement on Feb. 15, his only public remarks since the incident, saying, "Words cannot begin to express how sorry and saddened I am over what transpired."

While he has yet to face any formal charges, Brown has reportedly made a preemptive move to repair his shattered good-guy image.

According to the New York Daily News, the 19-year-old R&B star attended his first session this week in the Los Angeles area.

Should he be charged and convicted, such a course would almost be a certain part of his sentence.

The enrollment is said to have been masterminded by publicist/crisis manager Michael Sitrick, whom Brown hired in the wake of his arrest.