During a dispute over his son, rapper Sean “Diddy” Combs allegedly attacked an assistant UCLA football coach and a UCLA intern by swinging a kettlebell at them. Combs was accused of assault with a deadly weapon as well as making criminal and terrorist threats and battery by UCLA police. Combs says that he was defending himself and his son Justin. His son, Justin Combs, is a redshirt on the UCLA football team.
The confrontation allegedly happened after UCLA conditioning coach Sal Alosi told Justin to get off the field during a summer workout. Later that same day, Justin and Sean Combs walked into his office, and the conversation became heated. Sources say that Combs allegedly grabbed a kettlebell and swung it around.
Nathalie Mora, a representative for Combs Enterprises, provided a statement that said, “The various accounts of the event and charges that are being reported are wholly inaccurate. What we can say now is that any actions taken by Mr. Combs were solely defensive in nature to protect himself and his son.”
Combs was arrested but released within several hours following posting bail, which was set at $160,000. No one was seriously injured as a result of the alleged assault. UCLA Football coach Jim Mora said, “This is an unfortunate incident for all parties involved. While UCPD continues to review this matter, we will let the process run its course and refrain from further comment at this time.”
In the end, prosecutors decided not to file felony charges. It is likely that the decision had much to do with the fact that Combs did not seriously injure any of the parties involved. The case has been referred to the Los Angeles city attorney. The city attorney will decided whether Combs should be charged with a misdemeanor. “We are thankful that the district attorney rejected felony charges in this matter. This case never should have been part of the criminal justice system to begin with,” said Comb’s defense attorney Mark Geragos.
Charges for assault with a deadly weapon can either be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor. When considering whether to charge this crime as a felony or a misdemeanor, prosecutors consider “the type of weapon or instrument used, the level of injuries, and the criminal history of the accused.” Former Prosecutor Dmitry Gorin explained that “when you miss with a kettlebell and there are no injuries, no recent criminal history and it is a parent-coach argument rather than a street crime, the totality of the circumstance doesn’t add up to a felony crime beyond a reasonable doubt.”
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At The Law Offices of Sean F. Leslie, we understand the stress involved when facing criminal charges. If you have been charged with assault or battery, our skilled attorneys can work to reduce your charges or eliminate them entirely. Let us put our criminal defense experience to work for you. Contact us today for a consultation.