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Woman Sues Chuck Berry for $5 Million, Alleging Punch

June 15, 1988

NEW YORK (AP) _ A woman sued rock ‘n’ roll star Chuck Berry for $5 million, saying he punched her in the face, causing severe physical and emotional injuries.

Marilyn O’Brian Boteler said Berry, 62, struck her in the face on Dec. 18 in the Gramercy Park Hotel. She said in a police complaint that the punch caused a cut that required five stitches inside her mouth.

Ms. Boteler, who is in her 30s and lives in New York City, appeared at the trial-level state Supreme Court building in Manhattan with her lawyer to file the suit Tuesday. She would not say whether she had dated Berry and refused to say why she and Berry had a dispute. She also refused to say what she does for a living.

Berry’s lawyer, William Krasilovsky, declined to comment, saying he had not seen the documents.

Berry, of Wentzville, Mo., failed to surrender as scheduled on June 5 to answer the misdemeanor assault complaint charging he hit Ms. Boteler.

Police Officer Max Polster, who was to arrest Berry, said he believed the musician failed to show up because of a misunderstanding between him and his lawyer. Polster said he believed a new surrender date was being fixed.

Berry, who wrote and recorded the rock ‘n’ roll classics ″Johnny B. Goode″ and ″Roll Over Beethoven,″ could face up to a year in jail if convicted on the misdemeanor assault charge.

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