Bobby Brown to spend nine more days in jail

Wednesday, August 27th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

DECATUR, Ga. (AP) _ Bobby Brown will serve nine more days in jail after being arrested for allegedly violating his probation from an earlier drunken driving conviction, a judge ruled on Wednesday.

The jail time will be followed by 60 days of house arrest, DeKalb County State Court Judge Wayne Purdom decided.

During the hearing, the singer told the judge: ``I apologize for being back in your court and taking your time. I have no reason, I am a human being.''

Brown, 33, was ordered to undergo another drug assessment and sentenced to a total of 14 days in the DeKalb County Jail. But the judge credited Brown for the five days he's already spent behind bars since his arrest Friday.

His wife, Whitney Houston, arrived halfway through the hearing and sat two rows behind Brown, answering a cell phone call during defense attorney Maurice Bennett's presentation. Afterward, the Grammy-winning singer and actress told reporters that she told Brown to ``stay strong, baby.''

Brown, a former member of New Edition whose solo hits include ``My Prerogative,'' was arrested in the Atlanta suburb of Alpharetta last week at a seafood restaurant, where he was dining with his wife.

Although authorities said Houston angrily confronted police during her husband's arrest, she appeared calm in court Wednesday, hugging and kissing him to show support.

Authorities say Brown was arrested because he failed to show up for a court appearance.

Brown's lawyers said he failed to check in with a probation officer because he was suffering from an elbow injury in July that kept him bedridden and was mourning the loss of seven family members.

They contended that he had complied with a court order and completed 80 hours of community service in California. But the judge said Brown will get credit for only 40 hours because the order specified the service was to be done in Georgia.

Prosecutors called Brown a repeat offender and recommended more jail time for the Alpharetta resident. In January, Brown, 33, was sentenced to eight days in jail and ordered not to drive for a year after pleading guilty to a 1996 drunken driving charge in DeKalb County.

Last November, Brown was arrested in Atlanta on charges of possessing less than an ounce of marijuana, speeding and having no driver's license or proof of insurance. He also did a 26-day stint in a Florida jail in 2000 for a previous probation violation.

After Wednesday's hearing, Houston told reporters that she was pleased with the judge's decision.