ASAP Rocky Claims Self-Defense in Swedish Assault Trial

“Moments later, they came back,” Rocky said. His security guard, who was not charged, then lifted Mr. Jafari by his neck and carried him several feet away, moments that were also captured on video. In the process, Mr. Jafari’s headphones were broken, and Mr. Jafari continued to follow Rocky’s group, complaining about the headphones. He said he believed Mr. Jafari to be on drugs, which Mr. Jafari, in his own testimony earlier, denied.

“We just wanted to defuse the whole situation and get away from them,” Rocky said. “Me and my crew start to tell them, listen, go the other way, we don’t want no problems. But Jafari, he was persistent.”

It was only after Mr. Jafari and his friend attacked his security guard, Rocky said, that he became aggressive. “I threw Jafari to the ground, and I stepped on his arm,” he said. “And I punched him or shoved him,” he said, adding that his friends joined in to help.

Rocky said his goal was to calm Mr. Jafari down. The prosecutor, Daniel Suneson, expressed some skepticism. “You had just thrown him several meters,” he said. “Then you kicked and hit him.”

Some of the questioning was focused on whether Rocky or one of the two men on trial with him, Bladimir Emilio Corniel and David Tyrone Rispers, used a bottle in the scuffle. Mr. Jafari testified that he had been hit on the side of the head with a bottle, but that he was not sure who swung it. If any of the defendants are convicted, the use of the bottle could be key in determining whether they must serve prison time, and if so, for how long. The judges are expected to hand down a verdict later this month.

Rocky acknowledged that he had picked up a bottle at one point, but that he did so only because he feared Mr. Jafari would use it, and that he put it down because he “realized it was stupid.”

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