Chris Brown accused of ‘blaming’ Rihanna for assault by domestic abuse charities

Singer's recent comments about 2009 assault criticised by two domestic abuse charities

Chris Brown has been criticised by domestic abuse charities for recent comments he made about his history of domestic violence. He has been accused of “blaming” Rihanna for his assault on her before the 2009 Grammy Awards.

In February 2009, Chris Brown and Rihanna were involved in an altercation while on their way to the Grammy Awards Ceremony. He was later found guilty of felony assault.

Brown recently opened up about the incident in a new documentary, Chris Brown: Welcome To My Life. After his comments made headlines, two domestic abuse charities have spoken out in criticism of Brown.


Sandra Horley, CEO of Refuge, told Harper’s Bazaar UK: “Whatever goes wrong in a relationship, no man has a right to hit his partner. We all say and do things we later regret, but domestic violence does not ‘take two’.”

Horley added: “No woman can make a man hit her; violence is a choice he makes and he alone is responsible for it. Blaming the victim is another way perpetrators maintain control over their victims–it shifts the responsibility to the woman. Manipulating her into thinking she is responsible is a ploy abusers use to deflect from their violent and controlling behaviour. Hitting a woman is never acceptable behaviour–it is against the law.”

Rihanna with Chris Brown
Rihanna with Chris Brown

Meanwhile, Katie Ghose, chief executive of Women’s Aid, has described Brown’s interview as “victim-blaming”, adding that “abuse or violence of any kind is never the victim’s fault”.

“Despite pleading guilty to felony assault and accepting a plea deal, in this documentary Chris Brown is victim-blaming Rihanna for the horrific physical assault he perpetrated against her back in 2009,” Ghose said.

“Brown is sending out a very dangerous message to both survivors and abusers by relieving himself of responsibility for his actions by blaming Rihanna for provoking him.”


“Women are frequently discouraged from coming forward for fear of being blamed for the abuse. Nearly half of domestic abuse survivors responding to a HMIC online survey had never reported the abuse to the police.”

In the original documentary clip, Brown had recalled: “I remember she tried to kick me, just like her beating shit, but then I really hit her. With a closed fist, like I punched her, and it busted her lip, and when I saw it I was in shock, I was ‘fuck, why did I hit her like that?'”

  • For support and information on domestic abuse, call the National Domestic Abuse Helpline 24 hours a day on 0808 2000 247 or visit here.