Chris Brown pleaded "Not Guilty" to both felony counts he is currently facing at his arraignment today, April 6th, in a Los Angeles courtroom. With his lawyer Mark Geragos prompting him when to respond, Brown said "Not guilty" to charges of assault and making criminal threats related to his alleged February 8th altercation with Rihanna. After entering his plea, the judge told Brown that his next court date would be April 29th, which will be a "preliminary hearing." The hearing was initially set for April 15th, but the late date gives the defense more time to work out a plea bargain. Rihanna was not present for the arraignment.
Earlier in the day, reports speculated that Geragos and the L.A. District Attorney were working overtime to map out some sort of plea deal that would have at least delayed today's arraignment, but no such terms were worked out. Instead, Brown and his fleet of lawyers and bodyguards entered the courthouse at roughly 3:25 p.m. PST with a throng of paparazzi, screaming Brown supporters and the Rihanna's Law group all mashed up against together behind the barricade.
If no plea bargain is worked out and this case does go to trial, with Brown pleading "not guilty" it is almost a guarantee that Rihanna would be called upon to testify against her alleged assailant. Shortly after the February incident, reports claimed Rihanna was reluctant to testify against Brown, but both the district attorney and the "Umbrella" singer's lawyer have recently reiterated that Rihanna is cooperating with the D.A. Even without Rihanna's testimony, there is a case against Brown, considering the "horrific" photographs of Rihanna's injuries and her crime scene statements.
After the Brown arraignment, Rihanna's lawyer Donald Etra held a press conference saying his client hoped the case would not go to trial and that a plea bargain would be reached. "She wants this to be over quickly," Etra said.
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