(Reuters) - Singer Chris Brown was under investigation by Las Vegas police on Saturday for possible battery on a woman, authorities said, in a case that comes nearly seven years after his notorious arrest for beating then-girlfriend Rihanna.
A spokeswoman for the singer strongly denied the accusation.
Las Vegas police in a statement said a woman was at a party inside a hotel room at the Palms Casino Resort on Saturday morning when she tried to take a photo of the “Run It!” singer.
“The victim was alleged to have been battered by Brown, who at the same time took her cell phone,” the statement said.
The incident followed the popular R&B singer’s performance on Friday night at a club in the city.
The website TMZ posted a photo it said showed the woman’s eye, which appeared to have some darkness around it.
Officers who went to the hotel to investigate the reported attack found the woman appeared to have minor injuries, but Brown had already left the hotel and they could not speak to him, the police statement said. Police did not say how exactly the woman might have been injured.
Police said investigators have still not heard from Brown. They listed him as a suspect in misdemeanor crimes of battery and theft, which are less serious in the U.S. judicial system than a felony.
Las Vegas police had not arrested Brown, 26, by early Saturday evening.
Nicole Perna, a spokeswoman for the singer, said in a statement the woman’s accusations are “unequivocally untrue.”
“Her claim that she had her phone in her possession inside the after party and was able to take a photo causing an altercation with Chris Brown is a complete fabrication,” Perna said in a statement.
Brown was arrested in Los Angeles in February 2009, on the eve of the Grammy Awards, for assaulting then-girlfriend Rihanna. A photo of Rihanna’s injuries posted on TMZ soon after the attack made Brown the object of intense criticism, and he pleaded guilty later that year to assault.
He was sentenced to five years’ probation, and after some brushes with the law his probation was lifted nearly a year ago.
A month ago, he canceled a tour to Australia and New Zealand after being refused a visa due to his 2009 domestic violence conviction.
Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis in Los Angeles; Editing by Matthew Lewis