Las Vegas police denied they are probing claims that B.B. King was poisoned, after coroners said they were investigating but had no evidence so far of foul play.
King died aged 89 on May 14 in Las Vegas, where he lived while he kept up a gruelling schedule of tours that ended only last year. King suffered from Type II diabetes for the last two decades of his life.
Two of his daughters — Karen Williams and Patty King — have alleged he was poisoned by his business manager Laverne Toney and his personal assistant, Eonline reported.
The Clark County Coroner’s Office, which covers Las Vegas, said Monday that it was investigating the claims along with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD).
“At this point we don’t have evidence that these allegations of foul play will be substantiated,” said Clark County Coroner John Fudenberg. “However we are taking them very seriously and will be conducting a thorough investigation” in coordination with police.
But an LVMPD statement Tuesday said: “Until such time as the Clark County Coroner determines Mr. King’s death to be from other than natural causes, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department is NOT moving forward with any investigation.”
Despite his legendary musical status, King’s final days were clouded by an apparent dispute between his family and manager over his care.
“I believe my father was poisoned and that he was administrated foreign substances to induce his premature death,” the daughters wrote in separate but identical affidavits, Eonline said.
“(I) request a formal investigation into this matter,” the court documents said, according to the entertainment news website.
Toney, who is the executor of King’s estate, shrugged off the daughters’ charge.
“They’ve been making allegations all along. What’s new?” Toney said, according to Eonline.
An attorney for King’s estate also dismissed the daughters’ accusations as “ridiculous.”
“I hope they have a factual basis that they can demonstrate for their defamatory and libelous allegations,” Brent Bryson said in a statement, according to the entertainment site.