Darren Lumar: How Did He Die? Who Killed Him?

Image Credit: GraveFinder16/Find a Grave

When James Brown departed from the world in 2006, some believed that foul play was involved, one of them being his son-in-law, Darren Lumar. Insisting on the suspicious nature of James’ death, Darren was attacked in 2008 and eventually succumbed to his wounds. The episode of ‘Death By Fame’ titled ‘Murder by Association’ delves deeper into the case of James’ and Darren’s death, explores the alleged motivations behind the crimes, as well as showcases how the investigators tried their best to get to the bottom of both cases. With the inclusion of interviews with loved ones of Darren, we get a detailed account of the circumstances surrounding the murder of Darren.

Darren Lumar Was Killed in the Garage of His Home

Darren Anthony Lumar, known among his loved ones as Chip, was brought into the world by Vernadean Underwood and Harold Lumar on June 15, 1970, in Edgard, Louisiana. Growing up in the loving and brotherly company of his two brothers, Dana and Darwin Christopher Lumar, he went to West St. John Elementary and High School in Edgard, Louisiana. For graduation, he moved to Atlanta, Georgia, and completed his education at Smyrna Christian Academy. Although he did not have much interest in toys, the young man liked the ones that had some practical use, including the Rubik’s Cube.

Image Credit: GraveFinder16/Find a Grave

When Darren’s parents got divorced, his mother, Vernadean, married Charles Underwood, who became Darren’s stepfather. On the professional front, he used to run a construction crew for some years before becoming a self-employed broker of private loans. In 1996, Charles underwent heart surgery at DeKalb Medical Center, where Darren crossed paths with a young pharmacy student named Yamma Brown. She was the daughter of singer, songwriter and dancer James Brown, a popular figure at the time who was often referred to as “the Godfather of Soul.” After getting to talking, they became inseparable.

One thing led to another, and soon, Darren and Yamma got pregnant with their first child and ultimately welcomed a beautiful daughter, Sydney. Soon, the couple decided to make it official and tied the knot at the Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Norcross, Georgia. They brought another baby into the world and named him Carrington Alexander Lumar. Darren had a health scare in the fall of 2001 when he had a heart attack, which was due to stress. He had to stay hospital-ridden for quite a while.

Over the next few years, the marriage between Darren and Yamma deteriorated, and in 2005, the latter filed for divorce, saying that “there are no prospects for reconciliation.” But just after 18 days or so, the couple reconciled by undergoing some counseling sessions. A year later, in December 2006, tragedy struck the family on December 25, that is Christmas day, when Yamma’s father, the 73-year-old legendary musician James Brown, passed away due to heart failure at Emory Crawford Long Hospital in Atlanta.

Cardiac arrest and heart attack were listed as the causes of James’ passing in his death certificate, which was reportedly curated by Yamma. She even denied an autopsy of his body. A couple of years later, on November 5, 2008, Darren was attacked at his residence and got shot multiple times on his ankles, wrists, and chest. The 38-year-old man somehow managed to drive himself to Northside Hospital for treatment but succumbed to the gunshot wounds a few hours later. The authorities quickly began looking into the case and launched an intense investigation as they looked for evidence in and around the crime scene.

Darren Lumar’s Killer/s Have Still Not Been Brought to Justice

As the investigators delved deeper into Darren Lumar’s case, they found out that he and his wife, Yamma, got involved in a serious altercation just three months into James’ death, on March 9, 2007, reportedly while arguing over the deceased’s estate. During the fight, Yamma stabbed him in the forearm, claiming that he was the one who attacked her first. However, she was indicted for aggravated assault for the same, despite her claiming that it was an act of self-defense. Following the incident, she moved out of the house.

Just a few months later, in July 2007, he demanded a full investigation into James Brown’s demise. Darren called out Yamma in an interview with a representative of WGCL, saying, “I’m gonna bet you everything that I own that they will find everything they’re looking for. Nobody wants an autopsy done, a toxicology report to see what’s actually in his system…what foreign to him was in his system when he died. Nobody ever countered my wife when she said, ‘We don’t want an autopsy.'”

Soon, in November 2007, the couple got divorced. But they decided to act civil for the sake of their children and even planned a family trip to New York. Their plan would remain incomplete as on November 5, 2008, he was ambushed in the garage of his residence and shot several times. When the neighbors heard the gunshots, they witnessed a black man wearing a hooded sweatshirt fleeing the scene of the crime. Darren’s death stirred various theories among the investigators about the motives. On one hand, they believed that he had been murdered due to his commercial dealings that had earned him several rivals.

On the other hand, there were speculations that he was “silenced” for allegedly insisting that James Brown was killed at the hands of “them,” with many interpreting it as Darren knowing something that some people wanted concealed. Despite having a few suspects on their list, every lead came to a dead end, and the case went cold eventually, with the perpetrator still on the loose. It is not that they lack information, there is too much information out there as Darren had many people who were against him and had reasons to arrange his death. Unfortunately, even after more than 15 years, the murder case of Darren remains unsolved.

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