HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA) — Fans of the late Stan Lee revere the man for the very fictional worlds he created with superheroes and memorable good-deed-doers.
That his former manager was arrested and accused of trying to scam the comic book creator has them wishing for their own avengers.
CBS2/KCAL9 reporter Jeff Nguyen reported from Hollywood where fans commented on Saturday’s arrest of Keya Morgan in Arizona and the accusations — which include elder abuse.
The LAPD released a photo of Morgan showing his hands cuffed behind his back.
One look at William Scott’s shirt and you can quickly see that Lee — who created characters like Spider Man, Black Panther and Iron Man — had a huge impact on Scott’s life.
“In my personal life – historic value, he’s very much up there,” says Scott.
Police say Morgan stole nearly $300,000 from Lee by holding on to money that was earned during autograph signing sessions last year.
Earlier this month, the LA County District Attorney’s Office issued a warrant for his arrest.
Captain Lillian Carranza runs the LAPD Commercial Crimes Division.
She says Morgan was active on his Twitter account when he was on the run.
“I sent him a direct message,” Carranza said. “I was hoping that he would do the right thing and turn himself in.”
But that didn’t happen.
Investigators aren’t revealing how they tracked Morgan down but they say he used his influence to deceive Lee into thinking he was in danger and removed from his own home in June of last year to a location he could exert more control over him, they alleged.
Carranza says it’s not just famous people with a $50 million fortune like Stan Lee who are vulnerable. “This could happen to me, it could happen to you,” Carranza says,
Morgan’s lawyer insists his client never abused or took advantage of Lee.
Carranza says for every one case of fraud like Stan Lee’s there are five that go unreported.
Which is why fans like William Scott says Lee’s legacy may be a valuable lesson to his fans about trust.
“It’s going to be something that I need to be well aware of come these next couple of years when my parents will be within that age,” Scott says, “where that care-taker will come into effect. And that’s something I should be well on top of.”
Morgan will face a judge in Arizona sometime after Memorial Day. At that point he will decide whether to face extradition to California. His bail has been set at $300,000.
Lee died this past November at 95.