Only on 12: Tomi Rae reacts to divorce mess with Godfather's first wife

By: Lynnsey Gardner Email
By: Lynnsey Gardner Email

News 12 at 11, November 8, 2007

AUGUSTA, Ga -- Richmond County Superior Court records show the Godfather of Soul and his first wife did divorce, and she filed for it.

That's the exact opposite of what Velma Warren Brown said in court papers filed in Aiken County on Wednesday.

Now the other woman claiming to be James Brown's widow, Tomi Rae Hynie Brown, speaks out exclusively to News 12.

Tomi Rae says it's a mess that's a disgrace to her husband's legacy.

"I feel very sorry for Velma Warren. I really can't believe she did this on her own volition. I really believe someone must have coached her into doing this, it just doesn't make any sense." says Ms. Brown.

Gardner, "Are you angry at Velma, Tomi Rae?"

Tomi Rae, "I'm not angry, no I'm not angry, I'm more disappointed."

Disappointed she says because she and Velma were friendly throughout Tomi Rae's marriage to Mr. Brown.

"I met the lady and she was nothing but kind. That's what makes me believe she didn't do this on her own volition because she knew she filed for it. She knew that she wasn't his wife. She did this a year after he died? Somebody had to put her up to this."

Now she says it's Velma Warren brown she worries for. "To do an affidavit, you have to take the oath. Now, she's purgered herself. I really hope she doesn't get in to trouble for that, but when you break the law, people have to realize the truth is going to come out so I just watch and pray."

And now that this fight is won, Tomi Rae is looking toward the next one; a court date set for November 15. That's when former trustee David Cannon will have to take the stand and account for more than seven million dollars the special administrators believe he mishandled.

And Tomi Rae says she is ready. "I'm going to continue fighting until the fight is won for my husband's rights, for my son's rights and for my rights, and that is the right to have some peace."


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