Oksana Grigorieva didn't think she would "make it through the night" if she stayed with Mel Gibson.
The Russian singer claims she recorded the actor's outbursts towards her on January 6- when he allegedly hit her in the face, breaking her teeth and threatened to kill her - because she was terrified of what he might do.
Asked why she made the recordings, which have since been made public, she said: "Because I didn't think I was going to make it through the night. Everything, by the way, this is really important, all the tapes that you hear on the Internet, all of them were recorded that one night.
"The tapes, as you call them, the voicemails, everything was recorded that night because I was in fear for my life."
"I really did not think I was going to make it."
Oksana - who has nine-month-old daughter Lucia with Mel - also blasted the 'Braveheart' star for claiming she had demanded money in exchange for not exposing the tapes, insisting his accusations have "trivialised domestic violence."
When asked if she tried to extort money from Mel, she added: "No, I have never tried to extort anything from him. There is no proof of anything.”
Mel, 54, is now being investigated by the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services over allegations he assaulted the Russian singer and Lucia. He is also being investigated by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department over domestic violence claims.