A 15-day injunction against the girlfriend of the is set to expire on April 30, leaving questions about whether the artist's lover for the past 18 months will adhere to a confidentiality agreement, a closer inspection of court records reveals.
Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Patricia M. Lucas signed the order on April 16 prohibiting Amy Pinto-Walsh from making statements or engaging in conduct that has the effect of defaming, criticizing, disparaging or discrediting Kinkade, his widow Nanette Kinkade, or any company owned by Kinkade.
The temporary order is the first document contained in a file at the Santa Clara County Superior Court civil division located at 191 No. First St. in downtown San Jose.
More than 50 pages in the file were copied for Los Gatos Patch by the records office at the courthouse and are included in this story for readers under our photo.
several media outlets around the country picked up the story.
Kinkade, one of the most prolific and financially successful modern-day American painters, died at age 54 on either April 5 or April 6.
The temporary injunction prevents Pinto-Walsh from publishing or assisting in the publishing of any book, article, review, notice, press release, advertisement, public or private communication or report concerning Kinkade, his widow or any company owned by Kinkade.
She's also forbidden from selling, trading, publishing, disclosing, producing, permitting access to or otherwise revealing proprietary information defined in a confidentiality agreement she signed in February 2011 to anyone in any manner whatsoever such as photocopy, reproduction or electronic media.
The injunction was sought by attorneys representing Windermere Holdings, LLC and Kinkade's widow, who is the trustee of the Kinkade Family Trust and executor of Thomas Kinkade's estate.
Attorneys with the Los Angeles-based law firm of Zuber & Taillieu LLP asserted in an ex-parte application attached to the restraining order that Pinto-Walsh violated the confidentiality agreement when she spoke to the press after the painter had died.
The court documents state the painter's date of death occurred the night of April 5 and not the morning of April 6 as had been reported by national media, including Los Gatos Patch.
The court file contains the declarations from five people who state why they feel the injunction should be granted.
Linda Raasch, a Kinkade family friend, wrote in her declaration that after she learned the painter had died, she visited the Monte Sereno Kinkade residence the morning of April 6 to "provide support during what I knew would be a difficult time for the Kinkade family."
When she arrived, she declared, the only people there were the Santa Clara County coroner, Kinkade's former bodyguard Dean Baker and Pinto-Walsh.
During her conversation with Pinto-Walsh, Raasch said she directed her attention to personal photographs, papers and memorabilia belonging to Kinkade concerning his family and said she "intended to release the Kinkade items to the press and to the public."
When she told Pinto-Walsh that disclosing the items to the press and the public would cause great emotional distress to his widow and children, "Pinto-Walsh was unmoved by my entreaty and continued to say she intended to release the Kinkade items to the press and the public."
In his declaration, Baker, the ex-bodyguard, wrote that "on countless occasions" he witnessed Pinto-Walsh make disparaging remarks about Kinkade's wife and daughters.
Baker, who worked for Kinkade from February 2010 to January 2011, stated that Pinto-Walsh was "gathering evidence" to "harm" Kinkade and his business. On one occasion, Baker said Pinto-Walsh threatened Kinkade "along the lines of 'I will tear you down.' "
"I witnessed Ms. Pinto-Walsh act in an impulsive and erratic manner during the course of my assignment," the former bodyguard wrote. "I would expect Ms. Pinto-Walsh to disclose confidential information that would harm Mr. Kinkade's family and businesses should she have the opportunity to do so."
Robert Murray, the attorney representing Windermere Holdings and Pacific Metro, LLC, a.k.a. The Thomas Kinkade Company, also submitted a declaration. Murray said he's been present in meetings that Pinto-Walsh also attended, during which aspects of Kinkade companies' business plans, strategies, financial information and other private sensitive information were mentioned.
Based on Pinto-Walsh's relationship with Kinkade, Murray said she had access to information regarding Thomas Kinkade Studios' proprietary painting techniques, including paint type, brush techniques and the use of computer technology in painting, according to the court records.
Murray also wrote that Pinto-Walsh regularly received commercially sensitive information regarding the Kinkade businesses, including information about the inner workings and intimate details of the businesses and Kinkade's painting techniques.
On April 9, a medical examiner at the Santa Clara County Coroner's Office said an
Several calls to attorneys representing Windermere Holdings LLC have not been answered. Marcia Horowitz, a publicist with New York-based Rubenstein Associates public relations firm, contacted Los Gatos Patch on Tuesday and said she was a spokeswoman for the Kinkade Trust.
However, Horowitz was not aware that the injunction had been temporarily granted and said she would provide additional information as it became available.
It's not known yet who is representing Pinto-Walsh. Pinto-Walsh has not returned multiple calls from Patch seeking comment about the court papers.