Detroit cop sues Trey Songz after sustaining brain injury in altercation with R&B artist


Trey Songz flicks off the camera as he's booked in jail for allegedly assaulting a Detroit police officer in 2016. - MIKE MORSE LAW FIRM
  • Mike Morse Law Firm
  • Trey Songz flicks off the camera as he's booked in jail for allegedly assaulting a Detroit police officer in 2016.

A Detroit police officer and a photographer who were injured when Trey Songz became irate during a show at the Joe Louis Arena in 2016 are suing the R&B artist for damages in federal court.

Lawyers for Sergeant Robert Avery allege the 22-year veteran of the DPD sustained a career-ending brain injury when the artist allegedly punched him in the face. They say Andrew Potter was photographing the show and sustained a head injury when the singer allegedly threw a microphone stand at him.

The civil suit filed by the Mike Morse Law Firm comes nearly a year after Trey Songz, whose real name is Tremaine Neverson, pleaded guilty to two reduced counts of disturbing the peace in connection with the incident. He was sentenced to 18 months of non-reporting probation and anger management classes. Initially, he had been charged with the more serious crimes of aggravated assault and assault on a police officer.

Neverson's episode during his Dec. 28, 2016 Detroit show began when he refused to get off stage, saying "If a nigga cut me off I'm goin' the fuck crazy." Shortly after, when the stage lights went dark and Neverson's microphone cut out, he "became irate and began to throw items around and off of the stage into the crowd," police said in a warrant request. He continued to destroy items on stage until security escorted him off.

Back in his dressing room, Neverson, who the suit says appeared to be intoxicated, allegedly became combative with Sergeant Avery and a group of Detroit police officers who had come to arrest him. Neverson allegedly punched Avery in the side of the face and, as he resisted being put in handcuffs, landed on top of the officer, causing him to hit his head on the concrete and hurt his hip, the suit says.

"This was a 22-year Detroit Police Department veteran who made the rank of sergeant," attorney Mike Morse says of Avery. "He's just this great family guy and because of this he can never work again."

In addition to sustaining a brain injury, Avery had to undergo a hip replacement, Morse says. Right now the suit seeks the jurisdictional limit of $75,000 in damages, but Morse says the damages are much higher than that. Morse recently got $9.5 million in damages for a client who was hit by a Detroit bus in what he says was largest settlement in personal injury case Michigan in 2017.

The suit also brings to light new details from the night of the incident, including a jail booking photo in which Neverson flicked off the camera. He's also alleged to have shouted a range of racist and anti-police statements during the altercation in the dressing room:

• “Why the fuck are y’all here? I’m not talking to y’all about shit!”
• “Y’all not talking to me about shit! Get the fuck out!”
• “Fuck you cracker white mother fuckers!”
• “Fuck y’all!”
• “Don’t touch me you white mother fucka!”
• “Fuck you Detroit Police! I ain’t saying nothing to you!”
• “Fuck y’all, you white mother fuckers! I’m not going no where! Fuck you!”
• “Fuck all you honkeys and fuck the police!”
• “Fuck you cracker!”
• “Fuck y’all, I don’t have to talk to you white mother fuckers!”

A screen shot of a social media post by Trey Songz in which he allegedly says "fuck the police." - MIKE MORSE LAW FIRM
  • Mike Morse Law Firm
  • A screen shot of a social media post by Trey Songz in which he allegedly says "fuck the police."

The lawsuit further suggests Neverson may have had it out for cops. In the days leading up to his show at the Joe, Neverson said "fuck the police" in several social media videos posted after he was kicked out of the MGM casino at National Harbor in Maryland. In one video, Neverson said, “Hey this is Trey Songz in D.C. with a special message for the fucking police — Fuck y’all! Fuck the police!” In another, he said, “On my momma, on everyone I love, fuck the police.” And in yet another video, he said “So they kicked me out of the MGM, but I’m in the MGM bathroom and it’s still fuck the police!”

When Neverson was sentenced to probation in the criminal case, his attorney, Gabi Silver, reportedly told the court that what happened appeared to have been "an isolated incident.” Silver said Neverson had no prior criminal history and is a charitable man.

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