Good news for California businessman Richard Long: He gets to keep Elvis Presley’s glass nasal douche. The Delaware Supreme Court upheld a ruling granting Long ownership of The King’s sinus drainer and a bunch of other Presley memorabilia oddities.
Long sought the memorabilia, known as "Dr. Nick’s Memories of Elvis," a collection of items owned by Elvis’ personal physician, Dr. George Nichopolous, from the doctor last year. Also in on the purchase were Long’s business partners, Robert Gallagher and Betty Franklin.
According to the lawsuit, Long paid Dr. Nick’s $1 million asking price and Gallagher and Franklin, who collaborated with Nichopolous in past exhibitions of the collection and claimed to have a "half interest" in the collection, said they would assign all their rights to a limited liability company Long controlled.
Long also agreed to lend the new company $1 million to cover expenses incurred by his business partners and another $1 million for operating capital.
Long alleges in the suit that Gallagher and Franklin refused to surrender access to the collection and wouldn’t provide proof of their expenses or necessary paperwork for insurance. He also said that within weeks of the deal, Gallagher told him he was putting together a group to buy Long out and that Franklin blamed him for "tremendous losses" when it didn’t work out to show the collection at Las Vegas’ Stardust Casino.
After Gallagher and Franklin repeatedly failed to show up for court hearings and depositions and ignored a court hearing to allow the King’s collection to be inspected for insurance purposes, a Chancery Court judge entered a default judgment in July in favor of Long.
Vice-chancellor Leo Strine Jr. held Gallagher and Franklin in contempt and gave Long authority to dissolve the partnership and sell the collection.
Gallagher appealed to the Delaware Supreme Court but the court rejected Gallagher and Franklin’s arguments that Strine had violated their due process rights in entering a default judgment for Long or that their behavior was excusable.
Long attorney David Finger said November 7th that Long doesn’t know where "Dr. Nick’s Memories of Elvis" is but that he’s determined to make Gallagher give it up.
"If he does not turn it over, we will seek to have him incarcerated," Finger said.
The collection includes a black doctor’s bag used by Nichopolous along with prescription bottles made out to The King, who died of heart disease and prescription drug abuse. There’s also jewelry, guns and a laryngeal scope that was used to examine Presley’s throat.