LOS ANGELES (CN) – Jimi Hendrix’s estate sued Hendrix’s ex-brother-in-law, claiming he tried to sell the legend’s Black Widow guitar for $750,000, though it doesn’t belong to him.
Experience Hendrix sued Sheldon Reynolds and Brian Patterson on Monday in Superior Court. Experience Hendrix, a Washington LLC, manages and licenses the assets and intellectual property of the master guitarist, who died at 28 in 1970.
Reynolds is the ex-husband of Janie Hendrix, the guitarist’s sister and CEO of Experience Hendrix.
According to the lawsuit, Jimi Hendrix left his entire estate to his father, James A. “Al” Hendrix, who assigned it to Experience Hendrix in 1995, and died in 2002.
Those assets included an acoustic Black Widow guitar, the Experience says.
It says it learned in June 2014 that defendant Patterson had contacted Julien’s Auctions in Los Angeles and asked it to sell the guitar. Julien’s contacted the Experience to determine if the guitar is legitimate, and the Experience said that yes, it was, but that it did not belong to Patterson – that it had been stolen. The LLC said it did not even know it was missing.
The Experience claims in the lawsuit that Patterson got the guitar from Reynolds, who claims that he got it in a divorce settlement, or that he got it from a friend who helped him take his belongings from Janie Hendrix’s home, and that Janie’s teenage son had “directed” his friend “to take a pile of guitars and other belongings, that included the Black Widow.”
“Neither story is true,” the complaint states. It says Janie Hendrix owns the guitar.
It estimates the guitar’s value as $750,000, and says it deserves treble damages and punitive damages for the defendants’ “fraud, oppression, or malice.”
The Experience is represented by Edwin McPherson with McPherson Rane.
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