TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – A woman who says she was slapped in the face by rapper DaBaby at a Tampa nightclub over the weekend has the option to file charges with the state attorney’s office, deputies tell 8 On Your Side.
Hillsborough County deputies responded to Whiskey North on North Dale Mabry Highway around 3 a.m. Sunday for a delayed battery investigation. The victim told deputies she was there to see a performance by DaBaby, whose real name is Jonathan Kirk.
According to deputies, the victim said as DaBaby was being escorted through the crowd, a woman next to her touched his face. The victim told deputies the rapper then turned and hit her on the right cheek with an open hand.
Video shared on social media appears to show someone shining a cell phone flashlight close to DaBaby’s face before he strikes the woman.
DaBaby apologized for the incident Sunday on his Instagram story. He said he could not see the woman because of the light in his face.
“I do sincerely apologize,” he said, “I do. I’m very sorry there was a female on the other end of the flashlight.”
The woman did not have any visible wounds and declined medical treatment, deputies say. DaBaby had left Whiskey North by the time deputies arrived.
“It’s a well-known fact – male or female – I would have responded in the same way,” DaBaby added in his apology video.
He also extended an invitation to apologize to the victim in person.
Deputies are not releasing the victim’s name due to Marsy’s Law. They gave her a request for prosecution form to fill out and return to the state attorney’s office.
DaBaby was arrested on a battery charge in Miami earlier this year after police said he got into an argument with a music promoter over payment for a performance.
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