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Nicole Brown Simpson’s Sisters Break Their Silence on O.J.’s Death

Nicole Brown Simpson’s three sisters, Tanya Brown, 54, Dominique Brown, 59, and Denise Brown, 66, are speaking out over a month after O.J. Simpson died of cancer on April 10, has learned.

“It’s very complicated,” Dominique said of her reaction to the news of O.J.’s death.

Tanya added, “This is a person who’s been in our life for a very long time, who wreaked havoc on our family. It’s like the end of a chapter.”

Although O.J. was acquitted of the 1994 murders of his ex-wife Nicole and her friend Ron Goldman following a highly publicized and controversial 1995 trial, he was later deemed liable for the deaths in a 1997 wrongful death lawsuit brought by the Brown and Goldman families.

When Nicole invited her sisters to upstate New York to watch O.J., then a running back for the Buffalo Bills, play football, Denise recalled, “He made a touchdown, and he looked up at all of us. I was like, ‘Wow, look at this guy. He’s amazing.’”

But “all hell broke loose when we came home that night,” she continued, as O.J. “flipped out” when Nicole kissed a mutual male friend on the cheek at the game. “He had her upstairs in the bathroom crying. He said, ‘You embarrassed me.’”

Nicole and O.J. share two children, daughter Sydney, now 38, and son Justin, 35. When she first got pregnant, Dominique said, “It just opened her heart more. I think she thought that everything would be different having a child.”

But instead, O.J. only became more volatile and abusive, according to Denise. “She was pregnant, and he was calling her a fat pig,” she remembered.

In the new Lifetime documentary series The Life & Murder of Nicole Brown Simpson, which is set to air on June 1 and 2, the sisters recount another incident during a family vacation in Hawaii when O.J. assaulted Nicole after a gay restaurant patron at a neighboring table kissed their baby Justin on the forehead.

Despite the violence, Denise said, “I thought they were isolated incidences.” But when she found out about her sister’s murder, she immediately felt that O.J. was responsible. “The moment my mom got the phone call, I heard this screaming from my parents’ bedroom,” she recalled. “It was gut-wrenching. I grabbed the phone, and the detective said, ‘Your sister’s been killed.’ I said, ‘Oh my God, he did it, he finally did it.’ I knew in my heart [it was O.J.].”

As Tanya, who said she only learned the extent of O.J.’s violence during the trial, recalled, “I was looking at the pictures, and then I looked at him, and I remember saying, ‘How can you do something like this to someone you love?’” And when DNA evidence, including blood found in O.J.’s infamous white Bronco and at his house, was introduced, she was convinced, because “DNA doesn’t lie.”

Dominique was more reticent in discussing her opinion about O.J.’s guilt. “Because of the children, I’m not going to answer,” she said.

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Although her life was cut tragically short, Nicole’s sisters remember that she found happiness after filing for divorce from O.J. in 1992.
“What no one knows she experienced before her death is freedom,” Dominique said. “There was this levity about her. She was glowing.” Tanya added, “I’m so glad that she had a good time the last two years of her life. I can’t bring her back, so why not try to look at it like that?”

The Brown sisters feel that now, just ahead of the 30th anniversary of Nicole’s death, is the right time to tell her story in The Life & Murder of Nicole Brown Simpson, which will feature never-before-seen footage and interviews with 50 of Nicole’s family members and friends. “Other anniversaries just didn’t feel right,” Denise explained to PEOPLE. “But we decided 30 years was probably the best and the last time to hear her voice and tell her story.”

“She’s not a dead body covered with a white sheet at the bottom of the stairs. That’s not Nicole,” Tanya added. “We want people to see this beautiful human being.”

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