Atlanta Bobby Brown was ordered Wednesday to stand trial on charges that he hit superstar wife Whitney Houston.
The R&B; singer is charged with misdemeanor battery for allegedly striking Houston in the face at their home near Alpharetta in December, leaving her with a bruised cheek and a cut inside her lip.
Judge Barry Zimmerman ruled there was enough evidence to continue with the case. Brown was ordered to turn himself over to authorities on July 10 or July 11 for fingerprinting, when he would be released on $2,000 bond.
The judge warned Brown not to have "violent contact" with Houston.
Brown and Houston exchanged smiles during the brief hearing, and left the courtroom arm-in-arm. They made no comment to reporters waiting outside.
Brown's lawyer, Maurice Bennett, said the judge's decision had been expected.
Simple battery is punishable by up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. The charge is usually dismissed on a first offense in a domestic violence case if the defendant undergoes counseling.
No date was set for the case to be heard in state court. "It could be as much as a year down the road," said senior court clerk Lanny Lipsky.