7:09 AM PT — A$AP just made an emotional plea to the judges, “I have spent a month in Sweden. This is my 5th or 6th time here. I have seen the most beautiful architecture. And the not-so-nice things … what I want is justice. I want my name to be cleared. Justice for all of us.”
6:41 AM PT — A$AP reacted to the text messages, saying he wasn’t involved in the back-and-forth texts, and he said he posted a video because TMZ has posted a different one that did not show the aggressiveness of the alleged victims. The video we posted shows Rocky attacking the alleged victim. The video he posted is an earlier scene, showing the alleged victim striking Rocky’s bodyguard with a set of headphones.
6:36 AM PT — Prosecutors just showed another message from Rocky’s assistant saying, “I hope Rocky deleted all the videos on his phone and kept only the one.” The message … prosecutors believe Rocky hit the alleged victim with a bottle, recorded the attack and then deleted it. This seems to be the centerpiece of the case — whether Rocky went too far by hitting the alleged victim with a bottle.
6:33 AM PT — Prosecutors are now asking Rocky about text messages from his assistant, saying “Harlem came out and smashed a bottle on a person.” Prosecutors are insinuating “Harlem” is Rocky. As we said below, Rocky denies hitting anyone with a bottle.
Prosecutors are zeroing in on Rocky’s phone, asking what he did with it after the incident. Prosecutors want to know if he shot video that has not surfaced.
6:17 AM PT — A$AP Rocky testified he “begged” the alleged victim and his accomplice to get away from him and his crew, and he believed the 2 were impossible to reason with because he thought they were high on drugs.
Rocky took the stand and admitted he and his crew “jumped” the alleged victim … but only after they threw punches at his bodyguard.
The attorneys focused on a bottle A$AP was holding as he tried to stave the alleged victim away. He insisted, “I didn’t break any bottles,” but conceded his crew picked up bottles to “get them out of there.” He also said, “You got to realize my life is very unique and particular. I’ve been stabbed in the face and my home has been robbed at gunpoint twice. That’s why I have security.” This was in response to why he picked up the bottle.
Rocky said his bodyguard tried various “tactics” to get the 2 guys away, to no avail. He says his bodyguard was trying to protect him but insists he didn’t “beat up the alleged victim.” TMZ posted video where you see the bodyguard pick the alleged victim up by his neck.
A$AP said the 2 men appeared “fearless” as they confronted him. He admitted to shoving the alleged victim and said there was pushing and shoving. But, he made it clear … one of the guys was “charging” him.
4:53 AM PT — Sources familiar with the case tell TMZ … Rocky’s team has reevaluated based on the alleged victim’s testimony and other evidence and now plan to call the rapper to the stand Thursday.
We’re told he will testify that the alleged victim was unrelentingly aggressive and threatening … and anything Rocky did was to defuse the situation.
A$AP Rocky has a story to tell about why he attacked the aggressive guy who unrelentingly harassed him and his crew … but he’s going to let others do the talking because TMZ has learned his plan is NOT to take the stand in his assault case.
Our Rocky sources tell TMZ … the strategy in the Swedish court is very similar to the way it would go down in the United States. Criminal defendants typically don’t take the stand, because prosecutors can pound away at even a small weakness, flustering the defendant and making him look bad before the judges.
As we reported, the prosecutor claims Rocky had a safe exit that day on the street … they claim he could have just walked away, and that’s a point the prosecutor would hammer away at if Rocky got on the stand.
We’re told the defense case will rely heavily on the various videos showing the alleged victim following Rocky and his crew on the streets of Stockholm and harassing them aggressively. There’s video showing Rocky pleading with the man to leave them alone, saying he did NOT want to fight.
We also know on Thursday, Rocky’s lawyer plans to grill the alleged victim like a cheeseburger, asking why he would not leave Rocky and his crew alone. The alleged victim claimed he believed he was going to die in the attack … and Rocky’s lawyers want to challenge him on that.
TMZ broke the story, the alleged 19-year-old victim was convicted of assault himself 2 years ago over a fight in Stockholm.
The PLAN is for Rocky NOT to take the stand, but it could change depending on the rest of the prosecution’s case … although we’re told it’s “highly unlikely” the lawyer will call Rocky.
FYI … Sweden has a similar law as the United States that protects people from self-incrimination.