Breaking News Emails
Casey Kasem's wife fought back as promised.
On Wednesday Jean Kasem filed court papers in Washington that include a Church of Scientology's members list from an entertainment site, an affidavit showing Casey Kasem's financial gifts to his daughter, and a letter from a physician disputing that his condition has worsened since he left Los Angeles.
For a year, Jean Kasem, 59, has been fighting her husband's children from a previous marriage and his other relatives over his medical care and condition. The family says Jean Kasem suddenly shut them out and wouldn't return their phone calls or allow them to see the ailing radio icon. Although Jean Kasem still hasn't explained why she has kept her husband from his family, she has accused his children of wanting his $80-million fortune.
Breaking News Emails
Specifically, Jean Kasem has said that Kerri Kasem, 41, who has been assigned to be her father's healthcare conservator by a judge, wants to donate his fortune to the Church of Scientology. Kerri Kasem has denied being a member of that church — the documents submitted in Kitsap Superior Court on Wednesday include an entertainment site's unverified roster of celebrity Scientologists that includes Kerri Kasem.
The court filing also accuses Kerri Kasem of owing Casey and Jean Kasem $1.3 million. An in-house accountant for the former "Cheers" actress estimates that Casey Kasem has loaned Kerri Kasem over $630,000 since she turned 18, and that less than 15 percent of that money would be considered gifts.
On Wednesday, Kerri Kasem told NBC News that she considers the claims "defamation of character." She vehemently denied borrowing money from her father and said that her "bank account is an open book to the court." Kerri Kasem says she has studied several religions, including Scientology and Buddhism.
"I've studied many religions and Jean will of course find the most controversial one and use it against me," she said.
The court filing also disputes what Kerri Kasem testified in court last week about her father, who is battling Lewy Body dementia, a terminal illness.
Kerri Kasem said that Dr. Donald Sharman, who has been treating Casey Kasem in Washington since May 13, told her that her father had developed bed sores and infections in the lungs and bladder since Jean Kasem removed him from a Santa Monica facility and transported him to Washington without notifying his family. They stayed at a friend's house with their 24-year-old daughter, Liberty, until Casey Kasem was hospitalized on Sunday.
But in a court declaration, Sharman says a June 1 examination showed no infections or bed sores. He also said when he first examined Casey Kasem at his friend's home, "I found the care he was receiving from his wife and daughter and care providers hired by them to be appropriate."
On May 6, Jean Kasem took her husband of 33 years to stay at the home of a family she has known since 1967, according to the documents.
One of the family members is Shasta Bartelheim, a certified nursing assistant, who also said in a declaration: "Despite all the drama and chaos and excessive stress that Kerri Kasem has brought to our home and neighborhood, and all of this massive legal paperwork and media that Jeannie has to handle simultaneously, Jeannie has endlessly and tirelessly given her husband the best care and she loves Casey and her daughter Liberty."
TODAY producer Michelle Hofland contributed to this report.