Police have halted their investigation into a theft from the late Aretha Franklin as prosecutors lack evidence to move the case on.
Police have halted their investigation into a theft from the late Aretha Franklin.
The 'R.E.S.P.E.C.T.' singer died of cancer in August, but two months before she passed away, officers in Michigan began looking into an allegation that some of her assets had been stolen and though cops identified a person of interest, it wasn't until after Aretha passed away so prosecutors don't have enough evidence to file any charges.
Sources explained to TMZ that charges can't be brought on just the police report as additional testimony from either a witness to the crime and/or the alleged victim is needed, and the Queen of Soul didn't give a statement when she was still alive.
In her complaint to police, Aretha told officers someone had stolen cheques and managed to transfer $178,000 from her account, but as she didn't give testimony, prosecutors can't confirm how the cheques were accessed or whether she willingly gave the money to the person of interest.
The case has now been rested unless additional evidence is found.
Aretha's estate also have other issues to contend with.
In December, the IRS filed a claim in Oakland County Probate Court alleging the Franklin estate owed millions in back taxes and penalties.
Despite court records allegedly showing the 'Natural Woman' hitmaker - who had four sons and married twice - owed more than $6.3 million in back taxes from 2012 to 2018 and $1.5 million in penalties, an attorney for the estate claims they have paid off $3 million and are in dispute over the figures.
Lawyer David Bennett said: ''All of her returns have been filed. We have disputes with the IRS regarding what they claim was income. We claim its double-dipping income because they don't understand how the business works.
''She had to pay for transportation, hotel rooms, back-up singers, musicians. When she did that, the IRS was questioning the returns she filed. We're going through audits. Returns were filed as timely as we could get them filed.''
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