We knew there would most likely be a battle over legendary musician B.B. King’s estate, but accusations of murder? This has surprised everyone. Las Vegas is indeed launching a homicide investigation at the request of King’s two daughters, Karen Williams and Patty King.
King’s estate executor and manager, Laverne Toney, is specifically named by the two women. You may recall King’s death at the age of 89 on May 14 in Las Vegas. King has maintained a residence there for years. The coroner announced via – believe it or not – Twitter:
“Our coroner takes jurisdctn over #BBKing body, performs autopsy. Results:6-8wks min. Homicide investgtn w/ @LVMPD,” (Clark County, Nevada coroner’s office)
In identical affidavits, the two sisters wrote, “I believe my father was poisoned and that he was administrated foreign substances to induce his premature death”. The court documents go on to say each requested a formal investigation.
As for the manager/estate executor, Toney shrugged off the daughters’ charge and said, “They’ve been making allegations all along. What’s new?”
There’s also someone else making a statement: King’s estate planning lawyer who calls the accusations “ridiculous”. He also has a warning for the two sisters, “I hope they have a factual basis that they can demonstrate for their defamatory and libelous allegations”.
Now that an autopsy is going to be performed, this will delay his memorial service and funeral in Memphis.
From Riley to B.B.
Riley B. King was born in poverty and grew up working in cotton fields, but went on to master the guitar and entered the music business after traveling to Memphis and working for radio stations. Soon, he was known as the Beale Street Blues Boy, which eventually earned him the moniker B.B. King. For decades, King played shows almost every night. It was a grueling schedule, but those who knew him say he thrived on it.
The B.B. King Museum and Delta Interpretive Center opened in 2008 in Memphis. It showcases artifacts from the legendary guitarist, as well as the cultural heritage of the Mississippi Delta. It’s believed that because it will be his final resting place, it could add even more value to the museum.
Of course, no one knows whether this extraordinarily talented man was murdered or if he simply died of old age.
Either way, let’s hope the family is able to put this rest so that they can move forward with the grieving process.
Even after the criminal investigation concludes, there will still be many estate planning quagmires that will surely keep the tension high in the coming months.
What do you think about the platform the Las Vegas coroner used to announce a criminal investigation? Is Twitter the right stage?