Here's What's Going On With The Alleged "Elder Abuse" Of Marvel's Stan Lee
A restraining order has been granted against an associate of Lee's who is accused of trying to take advantage of the elderly comics legend. The associate says that's false.
Accusations that an associate of Stan Lee tried to commit financial elder abuse against the 95-year-old Marvel Comics legend and take advantage of his $50 million estate has now led to charges of false police reports.
Revelations of the legal drama came in court documents filed on Wednesday and provided to BuzzFeed News in which a restraining order was granted against the associate, Keya Morgan.
Tom Lallas, who worked as Lee's attorney from late 2017 to February, wrote in a court filing that Morgan, a 42-year-old memorabilia collector, "inserted himself" into Lee's life after the death of the comic book creator's wife in July.
Morgan subsequently hired a 24-hour security team and new lawyers for Lee, according to Lallas, who said Morgan is "unduly influencing Mr. Lee and isolating him," with family members unable to call him, the court records state.
Lee has severe hearing and vision impairments, according to Lallas, and requires 24-hour nursing care.
Lallas subsequently reached out to law enforcement to conduct a welfare check on Lee.
The court documents show that two detectives and a social worker went to Lee's home on May 30 to interview the comic legend and told his security team not to allow anyone to disturb them.
Morgan then allegedly arrived at the house, was told by the security guards that detectives were interviewing Lee, and left.
He's then alleged to have made a 911 call to falsely say there were burglars in Lee's house.
"I have a very dear friend I take care of who is 95 and um, uh, three unidentified people have gone inside this house and locked the door and locked his security out and I'm very, very scared that they're harming him," Morgan said in a transcript of a call included with the restraining order.
Morgan was arrested on Monday on suspicion of two charges of making false reports of an emergency. But he told BuzzFeed News he would "100% prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the allegations against him are false."
Los Angeles police told BuzzFeed News on Thursday that there is no longer an active investigation into the matter.
Morgan told BuzzFeed News via text message that the allegations were part of "a witch hunt by [Lee's] daughter and her lawyer against me because she cannot stand the fact Stan likes me so much."
"I have taken great care of Stan Lee for the past many years, and have never had a problem directly with Stan," he said.
A day before the arrest, Lee posted a video to his Twitter account in which he said Morgan was his sole partner and business manager.
"Anybody else who claims to be my rep is just making that story up," he said in the video.
Lallas has since been appointed as Lee's guardian.
In a statement, Lallas said his objectives were to "(i) protect the financial, emotional, physical and mental health and wellbeing of Mr. Lee, (ii) help Mr. Lee preserve his assets and estate, and (iii) prevent Mr. Lee from being subject to undue influence, coercion, and/or control by third parties whether by bad actors, predators, or otherwise."
Here is Keya Morgan's full message to BuzzFeed News:
I have taken great care of Stan Lee for the past many years, and have never had a problem directly with Stan. I have a fantastic relationship with him for the past many years as he has stated countless times on the record and I literally saved his life once. This is a witchhunt by his daughter and her lawyer against me because she cannot stand the fact Stan likes me so much. I will 100% prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the allegations against me are false. And I will definitely take legal action against anyone who is making up these lies. The truth will come out. I will be glad to speak with you as soon as my lawyer allows it. I have a tremendous amount of documentation and proof.
—Claudia Rosenbaum contributed reporting.