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Legal expert: Chris Brown, Rihanna assault case could take time

February 11, 2009 |  9:32 am

The decision by Los Angeles County district attorney’s office to have police do further investigating in the assault case involving R&B artist Chris Brown is not that unusual -- especially in a high-profile case, according to a legal expert.

“It is clear that they trying to have every 't' crossed and 'i' dotted,” said lawyer Michael Kraut, who prosecuted hundreds of domestic violence cases during 14 years as a deputy district attorney.

Kraut said that in an attempt to nail down every element of the alleged crime, prosecutors sometimes send police back to videotape witness accounts, secure hospital records or gather documentation of the couple’s relationship.

The district attorney’s office said LAPD investigators presented the case to prosecutors Tuesday morning and, after reviewing the material, directed detectives to do further investigation before returning to them. R&B star Rihanna is cooperating with investigators building a domestic violence case against her boyfriend, Brown, according to law enforcement sources.

"The higher the profile the case, the less likely they are to want to rush,” Kraut said

Prosecutors insisted that the delay in a decision on whether to charge Brown was not unusual, given that he is already out of custody after his arrest earlier this week.

“In cases where the suspect is free on bail, it is not uncommon to asked for additional investigation from the Police Department before making a filing decision,” said Sandi Gibbons, a department spokesman.

An alleged early morning altercation with Brown after a pre-Grammy Awards party left Robyn Rihanna Fenty with bruises and a scratch on her face, according to police sources. Her injuries were treated at a "major medical facility," a police source said.

-- Harriet Ryan and Richard Winton

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