Brown's official cause of death at 73 was a heart attack and fluid in the lungs
Dr Marvin Crawford said: 'He changed too fast. What went wrong in that room?'
Family, friends and business associates are pushing for a criminal investigation
One pal was so concerned he took a vial of the singer's blood from an IV tube
But Brown's daughter Yamma declined an autopsy when he died
And sister Deanna would not confirm where her dad's remains are kept
Friends of his third wife, Adrienne Brown, believe, she too, was murdered
Wide ranging CNN report also hears rape and abuse allegations leveled at Brown by Jacque Hollander, who worked with the star in 1980s
Bombshell new claims from a raft of James Brown's friends, family and associates suggest that the Godfather of Soul and his third wife Adrienne were both murdered.
At least 13 people close to the legendary singer have demanded an autopsy on his body, refusing to believe his death aged 73 in 2006 was due to natural causes.
Brown's official cause of death was listed as a heart attack and fluid in the lungs. But even the doctor who signed his death certificate doubts that's what really happened to him.
Dr Marvin Crawford told CNN: 'He changed too fast. He was a patient I would never have predicted would have coded. But he died that night, and I did raise that question: What went wrong in that room?'
Now his widow, children, friends and business associates are pushing for a criminal investigation into his death on Christmas Day 13 years ago.
Following his death one friend, Andre White, was so concerned of suspicious circumstances that he took a vial of the singer's blood from an IV tube.
But when Brown died, his daughter Yamma declined an autopsy. Her sister Deanna Brown Thomas would not confirm where her dad's remains are kept.
Among the other concerns raised was the official story of Brown's personal manager Charles Bobbit, who died in 2017 at age 87. He was the only person in the room when Brown died but his story has been described as 'vague'.
Brown's manager Frank Copsidas said: 'The story was always a little vague.' Andre White added: 'It didn't make sense.' And his friend Fannie Brown Burford said: 'Knew he was lying right off.'
Daughter, LaRhonda Pettit and son-in-law Darren Lumar, also both alleged that Brown was murdered. They both have since died. Lumar was murdered a year after making the claims in an as-yet unsolved killing.
The CNN investigation has also uncovered friends of his third wife, Adrienne Brown, believe she too was murdered.
Officially Adrienne died on January 6, 1996, two days after undergoing plastic surgery. But a retired police detective has since come forward with evidence from an informant which alleges she was given a fatal drug overdose.
The doctor named in the allegations denied any knowledge but Adrienne's close friend Jacque Hollander told the network: 'There's no doubt she was murdered.'
In a wide ranging investigation, a number of the allegations stem from Hollander, who accused Brown of raping her in 1988 after the pair worked together. It also details further allegations of Brown's history of violence against women.
Kay Mixon, an advocate for domestic violence victims in Aiken County, South Carolina, knew Adrienne. She even alleges Brown had something to do with his wife's death.
She said: 'And they announced that she had died, over an overdose. And my first thing was, 'No she didn't. He killed her.' I can't prove it, and I probably shouldn't say it, but I will take that to my grave. I believe he either did it or he had someone do it.'
A notebook from a police informant Linda Bennett said of Adrienne's death: 'I know he murdered James Brown's wife (as he referred to her) I know he knew he did + he was trying desperately to cover. I know because he told me — he told me so himself, then he tried to kill me.'
Even fourth wife Tomi Rae told a TV crew in 2005: 'This is my last chance to get away from something that I'm convinced is going to kill me. And I wouldn't be the first, so.'
Brown was never prosecuted with raping Hollander but she began saving evidence and documents about him and said she told his wife Adrienne about at the time.
1988: Third wife Adrienne checked into a hospital in Augusta with bruises covering her body. Hollander alleges Brown raped her shortly before this.
1994-99: Backup singer named Lisa Rushton accused Brown of demanding sexual favors, cutting her pay and keeping her off stage when she refused.
She also allged he put a hand on her buttocks. She later withdrew the suit.
1999-2000: Lisa Agbalaya said Brown told her he had 'bull testicles' in a civil lawsuit. Brown was cleared of sexual harassment by a jury in LA but found liable for wrongful termination.
2004: Brown's fourth wife went to police with scratches and bruising. Brown pleaded guilty to domestic violence but avoided jail and paid a $1,087 fine.
The big issues surrounding James Brown's Death!
Nearly 140 people, 1,300 pages of text messages and tens of thousands of pages of police and court records were looked at for the extensive investigation into James Brown's death.
The official story of Brown's personal manager Charles Bobbit appears to have been a concern for numerous friends. Brown's manager Frank Copsidas said: 'The story was always a little vague.' Andre White added: 'It didn't make sense.' And friend Fannie Brown Burford said: 'Knew he was lying right off.'
There has also been a suggestion Brown was trying to leave his lawyer Buddy Dallas and accountant David Cannon. Copsidas said: 'He didn't want a lot of people to know, because he was afraid Dallas and Cannon would try to stop him.' Dallas and Cannon declined to speak on the record to CNN.
Cannon, who died in October, had already been sentenced to three years of home confinement in 2011. He faced charges he took more money than he was allowed under contract from the late soul singer in his final years.
When Brown died his daughter Yamma declined an autopsy. It is not known why but she has said: 'I had my own personal reasons for not doing an autopsy. I don't want to talk about that.'. Her sister Deanna Brown Thomas would also not confirm where her dad's remains are kept.
Shortly after his death son-in-law Darren Lumar alleged that Brown was murdered. A year after he made his allegation on local TV news Lumar himself was murdered in Atlanta in 2008 in a case that has never been solved.
And then there is the mystery of Brown's former hairdresser who Hollander said confessed to her she knew something about his death. Candice Hurst has denied any connection to his death, saying: 'No, I did not kill James Brown. I would never harm a hair on his head.'
But Jacque said she was also asked to throw a mysterious duffel bag owned by Hurst into a lake by Brown's laywer Dallas. He declined to comment on this to CNN. Inside the bag was lingerie, combs and curlers, and a pair of black high heeled shoes.
Lab tests on the shoe showed it had marijuana, cocaine and a prescription drug called Diltiazem on it. When asked how she could have gotten Diltiazem on her shoe Hurst said: 'I have no idea.'
Dr Crawford said: 'If she picked that up from that room, that is, the Diltiazem on the shoe, the marijuana and the cocaine, it fits our picture of being highly suspicious that somebody perhaps could have given him an illicit substance that led to his death.'