14th June 2024

James Brown died in 2006

An Atlanta prosecutor is weighing whether to open an investigation into the death of James Brown after meeting with a woman who claims she has evidence the singer was slain.

On Wednesday, Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard Jr. interviewed Jacque Hollander, a circus singer who has been alleging for years Brown was killed. Howard told CNN his office plans to conduct further interviews and examine potential evidence before deciding whether to launch a full investigation.

The news comes one year after CNN’s explosive investigation in which 13 people close to Brown said they don’t believe he died of natural causes. Brown, dubbed the “Godfather of Soul,” died at an Atlanta hospital on Dec. 25, 2006. He was 73. Brown’s official cause of death was listed as congestive heart failure due to complications from pneumonia.


CNN sat in on Hollander’s meeting with the district attorney. Howard and two other prosecutors listened as she gave them a list of other witnesses, provided them with a stack of printed text messages and provided a green plastic storage bin that she said was filled with evidence.

“So,” Howard asked Hollander, per CNN, “are you bringing the bin to leave here?”

“Well,” she said, “I sure don’t want it.”

Howard accepted the bin and its contents and said investigators will check out her story. Yahoo Entertainment reached out to Howard’s office for comment, but did not immediately receive a response.

Hollander first called CNN in 2017 claiming Brown and his third wife, Adrienne Brown, had been killed. Adrienne died Jan. 6, 1996 in California while recovering from plastic surgery. Police did not investigate her death.

Getting to the bottom

CNN interviewed 140 people for its investigative series last year. At least 13 people who knew Brown — including Hollander, Brown’s manager, his son Daryl, his last wife and a man who claimed to have taken a vial of Brown’s blood from the hospital — said they want police to open a criminal investigation into his death or exhume the singer’s body for an autopsy.

“CNN found many reasons to question whether James or Adrienne Brown died of natural causes,” the network states in its story.

After Atlanta police declined to open an investigation into Brown’s death, Holland said she’s grateful the district attorney agreed to meet with her.

“He was very kind,” she said outside the courthouse Wednesday. “I think he will get to the bottom of this.”

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