*Sporting jailhouse orange, Chris Brown appeared in court Monday and was ordered to remain behind bars without bail for at least a month, until a formal probation hearing can be convened on April 23 to address his premature dismissal Friday from a Malibu rehab facility.
It’ll be his longest stint behind bars and comes more than five years after he viciously attacked his then-girlfriend Rihanna in a rented sports car just hours before the Grammy Awards.
The reasons he was kicked out of anger management were finally detailed in court. Superior Court Judge James R. Brandlin said he was most troubled by a comment the singer made last week during a “morning reflection meeting.”
While reading from a card during an exercise asking him to reflect on what he was good or excelled at, Brown allegedly added, “I am good at using guns and knives.”
Other transgressions cited by rehab workers included the singer ignoring a worker who was waiting to give him a drug test, rubbing elbows with a woman when he had signed an agreement to stay at least two feet away from all female clients and joking telling fellow patients, “I’m going to ask my higher power to take away my troubles.” When asked whether he was serious, Brown said yes while shaking his head no, a report on Brown’s conduct stated.
Brown’s attorney Mark Geragos likened the comment to Brown saying, “I’m going to ask my higher power to take away my troubles.” Geragos told the court Brown passed two drug screenings and the touching of the female amounted to “rubbing elbows.”
Brandlin wasn’t trying to hear it. “It is clear from reading the incident report from the program, the program was concerned about the defendant’s noncompliance and inability to follow the program’s rules,” he said.
Outside court, Geragos described Brown as having a bad day at the facility and said he didn’t think his client should be forced to stay behind bars for another month.
“You know — do you have a bad day? I have bad days sometimes,” Geragos said. “Do you say things you’d like to take back? I certainly do. So I don’t know that being in a therapeutic session and you’re talking about your reflections and you say one sentence means you go to jail? Seems to me to be counterproductive to therapy.”
Brown’s ejection marks the second time he has been kicked out of a rehab center. During family counseling in November, Brown walked out and threw a rock through his mother’s car window. That led the judge to order a lengthy stay at another rehab, to complete 24 hours a week of community labor and to undergo periodic drug tests.
On Monday, Brandlin also rejected Geragos’ request that Brown be released because of his pending trial April 17 in Washington, D.C., where he faces a misdemeanor assault charge. He was accused of hitting a man trying to take a picture of him outside the W Hotel.
Geragos said he planned to petition to have Brown released before the April hearing. He said Brown’s incarceration might make it impossible for the trial to start on time, and would be a waste of judicial and jail resources.
Deputy District Attorney Mary Murray however said Brown has had repeated chances to comply with his sentence for the Rihanna attack, which required him to obey all laws and complete six months’ worth of community labor. Brown’s completion of those hours was called into question last year, and Brandlin required the singer to do another 1,000 hours of roadside cleanup and graffiti removal as punishment for a misdemeanor hit-and-run case.
“He has put himself into custody,” Murray said.
The judge also denied Geragos’ request to have Brown enter another program. Prosecutor Murray had argued that given Brown’s repeated opportunities, he was not deserving of another chance.
Before cameras rolled during the hearing, Geragos, argued his client should be able to change from jail issued orange into a business suit.
“This will end up being filmed and shown around the world,” Geragos said, noting Brown’s assault trial next month in Washington, D.C. Brandlin agreed Brown’s handcuffs could be removed in court, but he stopped short of allowing the change of clothes.
Geragos then asked that the session not be videotaped. But the judge and prosecutor both noted the image of Brown in orange jail clothing would not prejudice his Washington case because it is scheduled to be heard only by a judge.
If Brandlin finds Brown violated his probation, Brandlin could send him to prison for up to four years.