ATLANTA (AP) — Singer Bobby Brown plans to build a shelter for domestic violence victims in honor of his late daughter despite allegations that he once hit his ex-wife Whitney Houston.
Brown was set to receive a proclamation Monday from City of South Fulton Mayor Bill Edwards and other officials acknowledging his plans build the not-for-profit Bobbi Kristina Brown Serenity House. The shelter will also offer a 24-hour crisis intervention line and an emergency transitional shelter.
Bobbi Kristina Brown, 22, was found unresponsive in a bathtub in 2015 and died after six months in a coma.
Her estate sued her boyfriend, Nick Gordon, for wrongful death, accusing him of assault and other offenses. An attorney for Gordon called the charges baseless, but after Gordon failed to defend himself in the civil case, a judge ruled against him in 2016 and ordered him to pay $36 million.
Bobbi Kristina Brown’s mother, Houston, died in 2012 after she drowned in a bathtub. Coroner’s officials ruled Houston’s death accidental and said heart disease and cocaine were contributing factors.
Last week, Brown speaking with reporters, said he still struggles with their deaths. He denied that his tumultuous marriage with Houston ever turned violent, despite a 2016 interview with ABC’s Robin Roberts in which Brown said he once hit her.
Houston called police just outside Atlanta in December 2003 to report that Brown threatened to beat her and then hit her in the face, leaving her with a bruised cheek and a cut inside her lip. But Brown described the incident as a “little spat” saying the two were playfully “slap boxing” before Houston took one of his jabs a “little serious.”
A judge in May 2004 ruled there was enough evidence for Brown to stand trial on misdemeanor battery charges and set a deadline about two months later for Brown to turn himself over to authorities for fingerprinting. An Associated Press report from the time says Brown and Houston exchanged smiles during the hearing and left the courtroom arm-in-arm.
Brown turned himself in on July 11, 2004, a few hours before the court-imposed deadline, and was released after posting a $2,000 bond.
A notice from the Fulton County solicitor general’s office says the case was dismissed in December 2005. The reason prosecutors gave was: “Unable to contact the victim.”
Brown says he blames Gordon, for his daughter’s death.
Gordon was accused of domestic abuse earlier this year after his girlfriend said he struck her in the face several times.