Charlottesville has Dave Matthews, Virginia Beach has Pharrell Williams and Williamsburg has Bruce Hornsby. Sure, in Richmond you'll glimpse the occasional Bill Murray passing through, but where's our big music celebrity? Or any celebrity, really? (Apologies to Journey's former Robert Fleischman, who moved here recently.)
We even lost the Rock to C'ville.
Temporarily, at least, and theoretically, by court order, our celebrity of the moment is breaking a sweat. Maybe he's in the median, or just around the corner. Maybe he's beside you while you're performing your own court-ordered amends.
Richmond Police Chief Bryan T. Norwood says his department is supervising R&B singer Chris Brown's community service — “labor intensive” tasks such as graffiti cleanup, ground maintenance and car washing — as part of the sentence against him for his beating of former girlfriend, singing star Rihanna.
So Brown's here, somewhere. Or is he?
Police won't say. Not when or where Brown will be or what he'll be doing, creating a vacuum, if perhaps a necessary one, of celebrity curiosity. Will we see paparazzi on the Powhite chasing down orange-vest-wearing young men?
A “few dozen” media inquiries already have come in from local and national media, a police spokeswoman says. (Already, City Councilman Doug Conner has put out a press release correcting what he says is an error-riddled story on celebrity Web site TMZ.com, in which he is quoted.) As for the police, the staying-mum policy holds.
If autograph-seekers end up tracking down Brown, it's likely that more security will be needed. That goes on Brown's tab, Norwood has told a California judge: Brown “will be responsible for paying any costs incurred regarding the facilitation of this arrangement to include, adequate security from the public (in the event they become aware of his presence) and one-on-one supervision where special projects are instituted.”
Police aren't saying how much that would cost, or what security arrangements would be made. But remember, it was the cops who first leaked the photos of Rihanna's bettered face (two Los Angeles police are being investigated, the L.A. Times reports), so we're crossing our fingers.
Have you seen Chris Brown? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or shoot us tips on our Twitter handle, @StarGawkingRVA.