Kurt Cobain’s widow and daughter have urged a Seattle judge not to release death-scene photos and records that a lawsuit claims will prove the Nirvana frontman was murdered more than 20 years ago.
Superior Court Judge Theresa Doyle was set to hear arguments this week over whether to proceed with a trial after Richard Lee, who runs a Seattle public access TV show, sued the city and the Seattle Police Department for the material he says will show Cobain did not die of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in 1994.
The city is arguing that the material should stay sealed for the sake of the family’s privacy. Cobain’s widow, Courtney Love, and their daughter wrote to the court about the physical and psychological impact that the release of the graphic photos would have on their lives.
“I have had to cope with many personal issues because of my father’s death. Coping with even the possibility that those photographs could be made public is very difficult,” Frances Bean Cobain wrote.
“Further sensationalising it through the release of these pictures would cause us indescribable pain.”
She wrote that she already faces harassment from fans “obsessed” with her father and fears it could get worse.
One fan broke into her California home and waited three days for her to return from vacation because he “believed my father’s soul had entered my body,” Frances Bean wrote in her declaration. According to their statements, neither woman has seen the photos of Cobain’s body.
In 1995, Love got court permission to keep Cobain’s suicide note, and another note used for handwriting analysis, out of the public eye.
Seattle police released two images from the suicide scene last year. One showed a box containing drug paraphernalia, a spoon and what look like needles on the floor next to half a cigarette and sunglasses.
The other showed the paraphernalia box closed, next to cash, a cigarette pack and a wallet that appeared to show Cobain’s identification.
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