Over the last three months Denise Brown has repeatedly spoken out against O.J. Simpson, insisting that her ex-brother-in-law killed her sister Nicole and Nicole’s friend Ronald Goldman.
The first outburst came in October, when the 37-year-old former model marched into a press room in the Los Angeles courthouse and told stunned reporters that she could no longer stomach Simpson’s protestations of innocence.
Since then Brown has made several television appearances and contributed to the publication of “Raging Heart,” by Sheila Weller, a book about Nicole’s life and marriage to the ex-football great.
The eldest of four daughters born to Louis and Juditha Brown, Denise is two years older than Nicole and had a close relationship with her. The two took dancing lessons together, were both homecoming queens at Dana Point High School and hung around with the same crowd as teenagers. When Denise became one of Eileen Ford’s young models in 1976 and went to Greece for a shoot, Nicole, then 17, went to Europe as well. Their close relationship continued after Nicole’s marriage to Simpson.
After the murders, Denise Brown assumed the responsibility of caring for her sister’s children, Sydney, 9, and Justin, 6, who are in the custody of her parents. The two younger Brown daughters are Dominique, 30, and Tanya, 24.
Denise Brown is single and the mother of a 9-year-old son. In a television interview last year with Diane Sawyer, she said she believed it was her destiny to raise her dead sister’s children and that they often remarked about how much she looked like their mother.
In a subsequent appearance on the “Geraldo” show, Brown was the first member of the victims’ families to accuse Simpson publicly of the murders.
“I am fighting mad,” Brown said. She then went on to read a statement she had prepared on behalf of herself and the other members of the family: “The Brown family is not, in Mr. (Robert) Shapiro’s words, `prejudging O.J.’ We leave that to the judge and jury in this case. What we refuse to do, however, is allow another day to go by with TV news programs filled from one end to the other with sympathetic stories about the defendant. … We just want the people of this country to remember that he stands accused of committing a terrible, horrible crime. And we want the people of this country to remember that my sister Nicole was a wonderful woman and a loving mother who has left behind two of the sweetest, sweetest children in the world.”
She continued: “Nicole is the victim. Mr. Simpson’s defense team can posture and pose all they want to. That’s their right and maybe even their job, but they can’t expect the family of Nicole Brown to turn the other cheek any longer.”
Brown also said that when police called the family at 6:20 a.m. June 13 to inform them of the murders, she grabbed the phone from her mother and screamed, “Oh God, he did it. He did it.”
Later, in calls from A.C. Cowlings’ Bronco to his in-laws and to his first wife, Marquerite Thomas, before he surrendered, Simpson accused both the police and Denise Brown of trying to frame him.