Live

Watch CBSN Live

Brown Acquitted Of Threat


A jury convicted football Hall of Famer Jim Brown of vandalizing his wife's car, but rejected a charge that he made a terrorist threat to kill her by snapping her neck.

The jury of eight men and four women returned their verdict Friday afternoon after 10½ hours of deliberation over two days.

Brown, his wife Monique, and several Brown supporters were in the courtroom when the verdicts were read, but none of them reacted to the decision.

Brown was charged with making a terrorist threat against his 25-year-old wife and vandalizing her car by smashing the windows.

Brown, 63, has a history of domestic violence charges, but had never been convicted. Jurors heard testimony during a seven-day trial about his relationship with Mrs. Brown and a 911 call on the night of June 15 when she reported that her husband had threatened her life and there was a gun in the house.

Mrs. Brown later recanted her allegations, but the city attorney's office decided to prosecute without her cooperation.

During closing arguments, prosecutor William Graysen called Mrs. Brown a mentally disturbed, unstable woman who liked to create "firestorms of drama."

Deputy City attorney Grace Kim Lee said Mrs. Brown was browbeaten into recanting claims that he threatened to kill her.

Municipal Court Judge Dale Fischer scheduled sentencing for Sept. 23.

At that hearing, Brown faces a maximum sentence of six months in county jail, city attorney spokesman Mike Qualls said.

Prosecutors said because domestic violence was involved, other conditions could be imposed, including probation, restitution and domestic violence counseling.

During the trial, Graysen relied heavily on the testimony of a psychiatrist who said Mrs. Brown suffered from a "borderline personality disorder" which would cause her to falsely accuse her husband.

He accused her of "crazy, outrageous behavior" and called her allegations fabricated and sensational. He maintained she felt rejected and used the 911 call to get back at her husband.

Deputy City Attorney Del San Juan claimed Mrs. Brown was trying to save her life when she fled her home, ran to a neighbor's house and called for help.

"For that brief moment, she didn't care about humiliation or what might happen to Jim. For that brief moment, she was herself," the prosecutor said. "She was thinking for once about herself."

©1998 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue