Chris has spoken out about the infamous incident
The singer was placed on probation for five years and sentenced to six months of community service following the incident in 2009, which took place in a car after the couple had attended a pre-Grammy Awards party.
Chris, 28, says their relationship had been on the rocks ever since he’d admitted to having a sexual past with a woman he’d once worked with and it had led to things turning violent between them.
‘She hated me,’ he says in new documentary Chris Brown: Welcome To My Life. ‘After that, I tried everything. She didn’t care, she just didn’t trust me after that.
‘From there, it just went downhill because it would be fights, it would be verbal fights, physical fights as well. Mutual sides, it is the first time I get to say anything.
‘I still love Rihanna, but I’m just going to be honest – we would fight each other, she would hit me, I would hit her, but it never was OK. It was always a point to where we talk about it like, “What the f**k are we doing?”’
This came to a head on the infamous night of the attack when the woman that Chris had confessed to sleeping with before he’d started dating Rihanna showed up at the Clive Davis party they attended, despite previously warning her not to.
After the woman approached them to say hi, Chris says he noticed that Rihanna, 29, was visibly upset.
‘I look over at Rihanna and she’s bawling, she’s crying,’ he explains.
Despite moving on from it during the evening and enjoying a few drinks together, the pair came to blows later on when Chris showed Rihanna his phone to prove that he didn’t know his former lover would be at the party.
However, the woman had actually texted him to warn him and Chris says this left Rihanna furious and it led to their argument turning physical.
‘I remember she tried to kick me, just like her beating sh*t, but then I really hit her,’ the singer reveals. ‘With a closed fist, like I punched her, and it busted her lip, and when I saw it I was in shock, I was “f**k, why did I hit her like that?”
‘So from there she’s…spitting blood in my face, it raised me even more. It’s a real fight in the car, and we driving in the street.
‘I’m like “yo, we tripping, what the f**k, what are we doing?” She tried to grab for my phone, and I’m not giving her my phone, to throw it out the window.’
Chris says he then pulled over and Rihanna pretended to throw the keys out of the car, though she was actually sitting on them.
‘I get out the car and I’m looking for the keys and somebody yelled and she yells out her door, “Help, he’s trying to kill me,”’ he says.
Following the incident Chris admits he felt like a ‘f***ing monster’.
Rihanna had previously opened up about the attack during an appearance on Oprah’s Next Chapter in 2012 and admitted it had been a struggle to move on from.
‘I lost my best friend – like everything I knew switched in a night, and I couldn’t control that,’ she said at the time.
‘So, I had to deal with that and that’s not easy for me to understand, interpret and it’s not easy to interpret on camera, not with the world watching.’
The couple briefly reunited in late 2012 but split up again in 2013.