Death of James Brown and murder of son-in-law Darren Lumar investigated on Death by Fame

James Brown smiling in a 1999 pic from New York
Questions have been raised about the 2006 death of James Brown and the later murder of his son-in-law, Darren Lumar. Pic credit: ©

Death by Fame is examining the death of the Godfather of Soul, James Brown, who died in 2006 supposedly of a heart attack, and the unsolved murder of his ex-son-in-law, Darren Lumar, who was shot at his home in Atlanta, Georgia.

James Brown was 73 years old when he passed away on Christmas Day 2006 in a hospital bed, officially from congestive heart failure and fluid on the lungs. He had been admitted the day before, suffering from pneumonia.

However, members of Brown’s family have long expressed fears that he may have been murdered. A nurse fueled the flames of suspicion by saying they saw a strange man in the singer’s room shortly before he passed away.

There are also rumors that a drug residue was found in a breathing tube, which may have directly caused his death.

According to CNN journalist Thomas Lake, who led an investigation into Brown’s death, no less than 13 people close to the singer said his death should be examined as a murder. This number includes  Dr. Marvin Crawford, who signed the death certificate.

Crawford said he believed Brown’s health had deteriorated too fast. He claimed, “He changed too fast. He was a patient I would never have predicted would have coded. … But he died that night, and I did raise that question: What went wrong in that room?”

Were James Brown and son-in-law Darren Lumar both murdered?

Further suspicion was raised two years later when Darren Lumar was murdered. Lumar had been married to Brown’s youngest daughter, Dr. Yamma Brown, and was killed not long after he publicly claimed his father-in-law had been murdered.

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On November 5, 2008, Lumar was shot multiple times outside his Atlanta townhouse. An individual was spotted running away from the scene, but no one has been charged with the killing.

Lumar managed to drive himself to a hospital despite suffering bullet wounds to his ankles, wrists, and chest, but he passed away a short time later. He was 38.

Police said Darren Lumar had many potential enemies

Lumar was a businessman and an investor, and the police suspected the murder was due to the way he did business. He was seen by many as a tough individual, and there were allegations of violence against his competitors.

There was even an accusation that Lumar had threatened to kill an individual while hanging them out a window.

Lumar had also gone through a divorce with Yamma Brown, and there were also unconfirmed allegations he had abused her.

Retired Atlanta PD Detective Tyrone Dennis told the press, “Darren could have been murdered for a number of reasons.”

Death by Fame airs Mondays at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery.

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