A cousin of Lyle and Erik Menendez is breaking her silence in a new interview with ABC and revealing that one of the brothers told her he was being molested by his father when they were children.
Diane Vander Molen, 57, spoke with ABC in an interview that will air Thursday night and said that while she was spending a summer with the brothers, Lyle told her he was being molested by his father Jose.
'He became very serious about asking me if he could sleep in the other bed next to mine and saying that he was afraid to sleep in his own bed because his father and him had been touching each other down there, indicating that it was his genital area,' said Vander Molen.
She was 17-years-old at the time and Lyle was just 8, so she made the decision to tell the his mother Kitty what she has been told by the boy.
'By her demeanor, I could tell that she was not believing any of this,” said Vander Molen.
'And [she] went downstairs, and Lyle had already gotten into the bed next to mine, and she went ahead and yanked him by the arm and took him back upstairs and I never heard anything else about that.'
She later said that the young boy's fear seemed vary real that night, adding: 'He was scared to sleep in his own bed because he was afraid that his father was going to come in and molest him that night.'
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Claim: Diane Vander Molen is breaking her silence in an interview claiming that she knew Lyle Menendez was being molested by his father (l to r: Erik, Jose and Lyle Menendez)
Allegation: Vander Molen (above) was Lyle's cousin and said that when she was staying with the family he asked if he could sleep in her room
Crime scene: Lyle and Erik murdered their parents in August of 1989, shooting them both to death inside the family's $5million Beverly Hills mansion (above the couch where Jose was shot)
Vander Molan said that after that night that Kitty ripped Lyle out of bed she just assumed that the mother had taken care of the situation, but now believes that was not the case.
'In hindsight, I wish that I would have been stronger about what Lyle was telling me so I could have done something to help them,' she said.
Vander Molan also said she wanted to speak out now because of prosecutors managing to convince the jury in the case that the claims made by the brothers were not true.
'I know for 100 percent that there was [molestation taking place].' said Vander Molen.
'Their privacy was everything to them. They were completely different people when nobody was around. And then Jose and Kitty would turn on the charm when they had people over, which wasn’t very often.'
She also noted that the two brothers has an odd relationship with their mother, saying: 'This was when Lyle was 15 and Erik would have been 12, and when Jose wasn’t supposed to be home that night, the two of them would argue over who got to sleep with their mom.
'I thought it was strange, because, I mean, they were already teenagers … but again, because it was Kitty, I never questioned it.'
Kitty's brother, Brian Andersen, rejected the claims made buy the brothers and Vander Molan however, saying: 'The idea that Erik and Lyle were abused by my sister Kitty is absolute insanity.'
Vander Molan stand by her story though, saying: 'I know that they would never, ever have done what they did unless they felt that they had no choice - that it was either them or their parents.'
She then added: 'I believe that very strongly.'
Family: Vander Molan said that Lyle was just 8 when he told her 'he was afraid to sleep in his own bed because his father and him had been touching each other down there' (l to r: Lyle, Kitty, Jose and Erik)
Fear: 'He was scared to sleep in his own bed because he was afraid that his father was going to come in and molest him that night,' said Vander Molan (l to r: Lyle, Jose and Erik)
It has now been nearly 30 years since Lyle and Erik shot dead their wealthy parents in Beverly Hills.
On August 20, 1989, Lyle and Erik walked into the den of their $5million Beverly Hills mansion and shot their father Jose point blank in the back of the head, then shot their mother Kitty in the leg as she tried to run out of the room.
In the end they shot their father five times and their mother nine, with the final bullet for each going into their kneecaps in an attempt to make the murders look like a mob hit.
It was not until March of the following year however that police had enough evidence to arrest them, and the two were not convicted for the murders until 1994, with both given life sentences.
The brothers argued that they were driven to murder their father and mother after a lifetime of physical, emotional and sexual abuse, a claim that relatives of the brothers said was categorically false.
Lyle is serving a life sentence for murder
Jose was a Cuban immigrant who fled the country at the age of 16 after Fidel Castro took power and worked his way up from nothing to become CEO of RCA Records, where he was responsible for the signing of groups including the Eurythmics and Jefferson Starship, and later the film studio now known as Artisan Entertainment.
After killing their father and mother, who was a former school teacher, the two boys got in their car and dumped the murder weapons before going to see the James Bond Film Licence to Kill and then meeting some friends for drinks