Christopher Maurice "Chris" Brown (born May 5, 1989 in Tappahannock, Virginia) is an American recording artist, dancer, and actor. Born in Tappahannock, Virginia, he taught himself to sing and dance at a young age and was involved in his church choir and several local talent shows.
Having signed with Jive Records in 2004, Brown released his self-titled debut studio album the following year. It peaked at number two on the US Billboard 200 and was later certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). With his first single "Run It!" peaking atop the US Billboard Hot 100, Brown became the first male artist as a lead since Diddy in 1997 to have his debut single top the chart.
His second album Exclusive (2007) spawned his second Hot 100 number one "Kiss Kiss", in addition to "With You" and "Forever". The album was also certified double platinum by the RIAA.
In 2009, Brown received much media attention after pleading guilty to felony assault of singer and his then-girlfriend Rihanna; he was sentenced to five years of probation and six months of community service.
His third album Graffiti was released later that year, and included the top-twenty single "I Can Transform Ya". Brown's fourth album F.A.M.E. (2011) became his first to top the Billboard 200; it spawned hit singles "Yeah 3x", "Look at Me Now", and "Beautiful People". F.A.M.E. earned Brown his first Grammy Award for Best R&B Album at the 54th Grammy Awards. His fifth album Fortune was released in 2012. However, after the release of Exclusive, Brown's albums have not been well received by music critics.
Apart from his work in the music industry, Brown has pursued an acting career. In 2007, he made his on-screen feature film debut in Stomp the Yard, and appeared as a guest on the television series The O.C. Other films Brown has appeared in, include This Christmas (2007), Takers (2010), Think Like a Man (2012), and Battle of the Year (2013). Throughout his career, Brown has won numerous awards, including two NAACP Image Awards, three American Music Awards and twelve BET Awards.
At around 12:30 a.m. (PST) on February 8, 2009, Brown and his then-girlfriend, recording artist Rihanna, had an argument which escalated into physical violence, leaving Rihanna with visible facial injuries which required hospitalization. Brown turned himself in to the Los Angeles Police Department's Wilshire station at 6:30 p.m. (PST) and was booked under suspicion of making criminal threats.
The police report did not name the female in the incident as is policy, but media sources soon revealed that the victim was Rihanna. On March 5, 2009, Brown was charged with felony assault and making criminal threats. He was arraigned on April 6, 2009, and pleaded not guilty to one count of assault and one count of making criminal threats.
On June 22, 2009, Brown pleaded guilty to a felony and accepted a plea deal of community labor, five years' formal probation, and domestic violence counseling. On July 11, 2012, Brown's community service was evaluated and he was ordered to meet a judge. The evaluation was ordered by Superior Court Judge Patricia Schnegg on July 10, 2012. He was scheduled to appear in court with regard to the evaluation on August 21, 2012.
While conducting his community service in Virginia, however, Brown was tested positive for cannabis and appeared in court on September 25, 2012, at which time his hearing date was changed to November, to determine whether or not he had violated the terms of his court order. He reappeared in court on November 1, 2012, to ascertain whether or not he had violated his probation less than 24 hours after attending the same party as Rihanna, dressed as an Islamic terrorist.
He attempted to address the court and was told by his lawyer, Mark Geragos, "I don't dance; you don't talk."
Though they became friends in 2005, Brown's romantic relationship with Rihanna reportedly began in 2008, and ended for the first time with the aforementioned domestic violence case in 2009. In 2011, he began dating aspiring model Karrueche Tran. However, throughout 2012 there was persistent media speculation that Brown was rekindling his relationship with Rihanna, though he remained involved with Tran and under probation in the Rihanna domestic violence case.
In October 2012, Brown announced that he had ended his relationship with Tran because he didn't "want to see her hurt over my friendship with Rihanna." The day after the announcement, Brown released a video entitled "The Real Chris Brown", which features images of himself, Tran, and Rihanna, as Brown wonders, "Is there such thing as loving two people? I don't know if it's possible, but I feel like that."
In January 2013, Rihanna confirmed that she and Brown had resumed their romantic relationship, stating, "When you add up the pieces from the outside, it's not the cutest puzzle in the world. You see us walking somewhere, driving somewhere, in the studio, in the club, and you think you know. But it's different now. We don't have those types of arguments anymore. We talk about shit. We value each other. We know exactly what we have now, and we don't want to lose that." Speaking of Brown, Rihanna also said, "He's not the monster everybody thinks. He's a good person. He has a fantastic heart. He's giving and loving. And he's fun to be around. That's what I love about him – he always makes me laugh. All I want to do is laugh, really – and I do that with him."
However, she also declared that she would walk away if Brown showed a hint of his past violent behavior towards her again. In a May 2013 interview, Brown stated that he and Rihanna had broken up again.
In January 2013, Brown was involved in an altercation with Frank Ocean over a parking space, outside a recording studio in West Hollywood. Police officers in Los Angeles said that Brown was under investigation, describing the incident as "battery" due to Brown allegedly punching Ocean.
In July 2013, Brown's probation was revoked after he was involved in an alleged hit-and-run in Los Angeles. He was released from court and was scheduled to re-appear in August 2013, to learn whether or not he would serve time in prison. The charges would later be dropped.
On October 27, 2013, Brown was arrested for felony assault in Washington, D.C. Allegedly, the fight started when two women wanted to take a picture with Brown in front of the W Hotel.
On October 30, 2013, Brown voluntarily decided to enter rehab, Brown's representative said in a statement: "Chris has elected to enter a rehab facility, his goal is to gain focus and insight into his past and recent behavior, enabling him to continue the pursuit of his life and his career from a healthier vantage point". Brown was expected to stay in the facility for 3 months.
On November 14, 2013, however, Brown was kicked out of the facility for "breaking program rules by acting violently". On November 20, 2013, at a probation status hearing, Brown was sentenced to 90 days at an anger management rehab facility. After Brown completed his 90 days, the judge ordered him to remain a resident at the Malibu treatment facility until a hearing on April 23, 2014. The deal was if Brown left rehab, he would go directly to jail. On March 14, 2014, Brown was kicked out of the rehab facility and sent to jail for violating internal rules.
He was expected to be released on April 23, 2014 but Superior Court Judge Victor Greenberg denied his release request from custody either on bail or his own recognizance. At his May 9, 2014 court date, Brown was ordered to serve 131 days in jail for his probation violation. He was sentenced to serve 365 days in custody, however he was given credit for the 234 days he has already spent in rehab and jail recently. Brown was given early release from jail just after midnight on June 2, 2014, because of jail overcrowding calculations that count one day in custody as two days, according to the Los Angeles Times, which further wrote, "Brown isn't totally free yet though.
He's still on probation, obviously, and has to see a psychiatrist twice a week, complete his remaining community service, take his prescribed medications and stay off marijuana, including for medical use. Court documents have said that the singer has bipolar disorder."
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