If you don’t believe that truth is stranger than fiction, it’s time for you to learn about the Isaiah Silva vs. Courtney Love lawsuit. The suit filed in Los Angeles County alleges that Love, Britney Spears’ former manager Sam Lufti, and 13 Reasons Why star Ross Butler (yes, really!) all conspired to kidnap, murder and rob Silva, Frances Bean Cobain’s ex-husband, in June 2016. According to the suit, the trio was after Kurt Cobain’s famed MTV unplugged guitar, an acoustic-electric 1959 Martin D-18E. The Martin would be the last guitar Kurt Cobain ever played.
The guitar has been a point of contention between Silva and the Cobain/Love family ever since Frances Bean Cobain filed for a divorce from Silva in 2016. It is a one-of-a-kind model, having been customized by the left-handed Kurt Cobain so that he could play it upside down. That particular model of guitar was also only produced for one year before being discontinued. In 2016, Courtney Love told TMZ that the guitar “is not [Silva’s] to take” and is “a treasured heirloom of the family” that her daughter “never planned on” giving to Silva. “I’m really glad she’s out of this very dangerous and toxic relationship,” Love said.
Silva’s lawsuit paints a very different—and altogether wilder—picture. According to him, Frances Bean Cobain gave him the guitar as a dating anniversary present shortly before their wedding. Moving the guitar out of storage required Courtney Love’s signature as well. Shortly after their marriage, Silva claims Frances Bean Cobain became addicted to narcotics and benzodiazepines which were allegedly provided to her by Sam Lufti and delivered by Ross Butler. Although Cobain and Silva attempted to settle their divorce amicably, according to the suit, Love and Lufti became obsessed with the Martin D-18E and began conspiring to murder Silva.
The suit alleges that Lufti, Love, Butler, and a chauffeur named Yan Yukhtman hacked into Silva’s iMessage account and impersonated him via text in order to make him seem suicidal. The plan, the suit claims, was to stage Silva’s suicide, thus freeing up the guitar and a number of his and Cobain’s shared assets. The foursome allegedly moved to execute this plan on June 3, 2016, when they supposedly entered Silva’s home and threatened him with rape and bodily harm in order to make him enter a car with them. A friend of Silva’s who had been in the house and was forcibly removed by the foursome reportedly called the police, who caught up with the car.
The suit alleges that Lufti “hurriedly concocted a false story intended to prevent LAPD from arresting them” and threatened to kill Silva’s seven-year-old daughter if he didn’t follow along. The police allegedly bought Lufti’s story that he, Love, Butler, and Yukhtman had just been playing a prank on their friend. The suit says, “it is believed, based upon facts and evidence, that Silva would have been taken to a secondary crime scene and murdered on June 3, 2016.”
According to Silva, the foursome then brought him back to the house and proceeded to try and pressure him into signing a settlement that would surrender the guitar, any claim to his and Cobain’s houses, and any spousal support from Cobain. Lufti’s threats against Silva’s family allegedly continued even after Silva fled his house, leaving Silva too scared to turn to the police. The suit claims that Silva believed Lufti, Love, and Cobain “controlled the LAPD, judicial system, and media.” Despite this, Silva filed a police report on June 8, 2016 and soon received a restraining order against Lufti.
If you were wondering where a Courtney-Love-killed-Kurt-Cobain conspiracy theory comes into this, here you go: According to Silva, Kurt Cobain’s mother Wendy O’Connor accused Love of being involved in Cobain’s suicide and said she was “keenly aware of the disturbing correlations between [Silva’s] circumstances and those of [Kurt Cobain].” According to Billboard, a source close to Love and Frances Bean Cobain says, “Frances and the family are prepared to fight with a fury of unprecedented legal force, and they will prevail.”
This is a wild tale which raises unending speculation and questions, but hopefully I’m not alone in asking the most important one: How did Zach from 13 Reasons Why/Reggie from Riverdale get involved in all this?