TAMPA, FL (CelebrityAccess) — Tampa police investigating reports that rapper Chris Brown “sucker-punched” a photographer in an early-morning incident at a Tampa nightclub on Monday.
According to local NBC affiliate WFLA, Brown and an entourage of about 50 people were at Club AJA in Channelside as part of a paid appearance when the alleged attack occurred.
Witnesses described the incident to WFLA, saying that Brown became upset by a photographer who was taking pictures and punched him.
The photographer, Bennie Vines, was hired by the club to photograph the event. Vines told police that Brown hit him so hard that his lip broke open and that he hit his head on the wall. Vines later posted at Brandon Hospital for medical treatment WFLA said.
According to WFLA, Tampa police are still compiling evidence from the numerous cell phone videos recorded of the incident. Once police complete their assessment, the case will be turned over to the Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office, WFLA reported.
Following the alleged attack, the nightclub released a short statement on the incident:
"Incidents like the ones caused by Chris Brown and his team are very sad to see. As everyone witnessed he showed up to the club at around 1:30am. After only a few minutes of being there, Chris Brown himself and his team assaulted our club photographer and proceeded to walk out of the venue. AJA Channelside and our employees apologize for the inconvenience. Assault charges were pressed and we are dealing with the proper authorities accordingly."