Tuesday, June 23, 2009 at 5:56 AM
Because of the O.J.-Nicole Brown Simpson precedent, Chris would end up being prosecuted despite all of Rihanna’s misguided efforts to protect her man. This precedent, of course, led to laws mandating arrest in cases of domestic abuse even against the victim’s wishes.
[Chris Brown charged for assaulting girlfriend Rihanna, TIJ, March 6, 2009]
It was a feeding frenzy truly worthy of O.J. Simpson:
Hordes of star-struck fans and paparazzi, including representatives from over 50 national and international news organizations, piled into the Los Angeles Superior Courtroom of Judge Patricia Schnegg yesterday to revel in what they expected would be a sensational preliminary hearing. Day one in the trial of Chris Brown on two counts of felony assault was finally getting underway.
What had these gawkers salivating, of course, was the prospect of watching Rihanna testify, even if reluctantly, about how (and perhaps even why) Chris beat the crap out of her a few months ago.
But as the opening quote indicates, I had no such expectation. Because it was disturbingly clear to me from the day he was arrested that, far from saying anything that might incriminate Chris, Rihanna was going to do all she could to exonerate him.
No doubt this is why, just minutes before the hearing was scheduled to convene, prosecutors made Chris an offer he could not refuse.
What was surprising, however, was how sweet a plea bargain he got: five years probation and six months of community service, which he can probably serve by shooting hoops with underprivileged kids a few times a week back home in Virginia.
All the same, it is noteworthy that the judge went out of her way to admonish Rihanna that the restraining order she issued is intended as much to protect Chris from her as to protect her from him. Indeed, some might infer from this “stay-away order” that Judge Schnegg felt Rihanna provoked and/or enabled much of her own abuse….
But since this plea will do nothing to punish Chris (who faced up to five years in prison), I hope the domestic violence classes the judge ordered him to attend will do something to rehabilitate his abusive temper.
On the other hand, given that Rihanna has displayed all of the characteristics of the battered woman syndrome, I think the judge should have ordered her to attend similar classes as well….
Chris Brown charged for assaulting girlfriend Rihanna