CHASKA, Minn. (KMSP) - Carver County probate court documents identified 6 siblings of Prince Rogers Nelson as the potential heirs to Prince’s estate. Those siblings and their 10 lawyers appeared in court for a quick, 12-minute hearing Monday morning, but a seventh name has surfaced in a court filing.
Darcell Johnston filed a document in Carver County court claiming she’s entitled to a share of Prince’s estate. But who is Darcell Johnston? Sources close to the family tell TMZ that Johnston is claiming to be a long lost half sister, born to the same mother as Prince.
At Monday’s hearing, Judge Kevin Eide determined there's still no known will, and Prince's siblings had no objections to the appointment of Bremer Trust as the special administrator of the estate. The attorney for Bremer Trust told the court that the bank "continues to search" for a will, but did not comment on whether that meant drilling open Prince's vault.
Monday’s hearing was quick, but the process of dividing the estate should take years. In addition to divvying up the estate, the other big issue going forward is whether Prince’s family will have control over his image and likeness. This control, referred to as the “right of publicity,” could be worth just as much as the estate. Minnesota has no state law automatically transferring control.
The death of Prince
Prince Rogers Nelson, 57, died Thursday, April 21 at his home at Paisley Park. He was last seen alive at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, April 20. He did not respond to calls on Thursday morning, which prompted his friends and staff to call in a welfare check around 9:30 a.m. on April 21. Prince was found unresponsive in an elevator at Paisley Park, according to the Carver County Sheriff's office. Deputies attempted CPR, but efforts to revive him were unsuccessful.
Search warrant sealed
About a week after Prince's death, the judge approved a motion to seal the search warrant and documents related to Prince’s death to avoid hampering the investigation. The search warrant and accompanying documents will be sealed until any potential criminal proceedings are initiated, or until 180 days elapse, whichever comes first.
Paisley Park has an assessed value of $6.7 million, but property records obtained by Fox 9 show Prince owned 15 properties in Carver County worth nearly $30 million. The properties were held under Paisley Park, Inc. READ MORE
Prince had recently signed a big deal with the music streaming service Tidal and reached a settlement with Warner Brothers that gave him ownership of his back catalogue. Among the treasures inside Paisley Park is the so-called vault in the basement, where Prince reportedly kept the master recordings to hundreds of unpublished songs and at least two complete albums. IN-DEPTH: Future of Prince's estate up in air