Now that Chris Brown has been formally sentenced, what will his punishment entail?
He was sentenced to 180 days of community labor service and ordered to undergo weekly counseling for one year. In addition, the singer will be under probation supervision for the next five years and must also abide by a protective order that restricts his contact with Rihanna until August 2014.
There are critics who have dismissed his punishment as a case of celebrity justice, but legal expert Peter T. Haven said, upon closer examination, Brown's plea deal might be just as tough on him as jail time, particularly the labor-service aspect.
"There sounds like there's gonna be a lot of challenges here," Haven explained. "Labor service is not a walk in the park. It may be better than spending 180 days in jail, but it's not a walk in the park. And there's these issues about the stay-away order [not being lifted]. Remember, if he violates [anything], it'll be a violation against his whole plea agreement."
Brown was originally scheduled to be sentenced earlier this month, but Judge Patricia Schnegg requested additional time to ensure the "Forever" singer would endure labor work in his home state of Virginia instead of community service. In court on Tuesday, Schnegg confirmed that Brown would report directly to the Richmond chief of police in Virginia, who will supervise his labor work, which will include picking up trash and strenuous physical activity.
"He's gonna have to get up early in the morning, drive somewhere to catch a bus with the other people serving, and he has to work out on the highway all day. That is not easy," Haven said.
According to The Associated Press, a spokesman for authorities in Richmond are determining the logistics for Brown. One of the concerns is if additional security will be required due to the singer's fame. Police are still deciding when Brown should begin his service work and what type of labor he will participate in. Each municipality has different types of work they accept as community labor work.
"Different offices have different relationships with [community organizations]," Ann Barker, chief officer for the Probation & Parole District 33 office in Virginia, told MTV News earlier this month.
Brown is set to enroll in weekly counseling at the Commonwealth Catholic Charities in Virginia, it was announced in the courtroom Tuesday evening. He is required to attend sessions every week for one year. The AP reported that a letter was submitted by the charity to the judge backing Brown, who will be allowed to miss only three sessions during his enrollment. The executive director of the program spoke with the AP and would not confirm when Brown would start his counseling. However, Joanne D. Nattrass said the singer would most likely conduct his therapy in a group setting primarily.
The Web site for Commonwealth Catholic Charities said its Batterers Intervention Program seeks to push attendees to turn inward and take personal responsibility.
"BIP frequently tests and challenges each group member's behavior," the information states. "Progress is made only if the abuser is self-accountable for all behaviors and develops the flexibility to make behavioral changes."
Brown is required to report to the Los Angeles probation office shortly. The judge instructed the singer that he has 72 hours to report from the time of his sentencing. Brown will be allowed to serve his sentence in Virginia but must report to his probation officer in California every three months.