Singer Chris Brown has pleaded not guilty to two charges of felony assault in a domestic violence case against him, according to this CNN report. The 19-year-old Brown is facing charges of assaulting singer Rihanna, his former girlfriend. If convicted of these charges, the sentence could range from probation to four years and eight months in prison. The alleged attack occurred in February that began when 21-year-old Rihanna, who had been dating Brown, found a text message from another woman on his cell phone. Brown issued a public apology for the incident in February.
In this case, Chris Brown has also been charged with making criminal threats. What is a criminal threat? California Penal Code section 422 states that you can be charged with a crime if you threaten to kill or inflict great bodily injury, even if you don’t intend to carry out the act. The threat can be verbal, in writing through e-mail or texting via cell phone. The only requirement for this charge is that a person is reasonably fearful for his or her personal safety. A criminal threat charge is a “wobbler,” which means that it could be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony.
You don’t have to be married in order to face a California domestic violence charge. You could be living with your girlfriend or even go out on a first date and an incident stemming from such relationships could be viewed as “domestic violence.” If you are facing an assault or domestic violence charge, please get in touch with an experienced Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer, who has the experience and the resources to build your defense and obtain the best possible result in your case. Call Sitkoff & Hanrahan for a free and confidential consultation.