Nichelle Nichols, the star from the 1960s who portrayed Nyota Uhura in ‘Star Trek: The Original Series,’ has been the subject of various headlines because of the controversy surrounding her conservatorship. The second episode of ABC News’ ‘Who Do You Believe?’ — titled ‘Protector vs. Predator’ — focuses on Kyle Johnson, her son, and Gilbert Bell, her former manager, as they share their side of the story. So, if you’re curious to find out what happened and where Kyle might be today, here’s what we know.
Who is Kyle Johnson?
Kyle Johnson was born to Nichelle Nichols and Foster Johnson in 1951. At the time, Foster was a dancer, and the couple divorced the same year they married. Kyle also became an actor like his mother and is best known for his performance as Newt Winger in ‘The Learning Tree’ in 1969. Kyle also featured in a few other TV shows and films in addition to being a musician during the 1980s.
After Nichelle had a few health issues during the 2010s and spent time in the hospital, Kyle came to California periodically to help her mother with errands and tasks around the house. But after he learned that Nichelle’s manager back then, Gilbert Bell, was thinking of getting married to Nichelle, he petitioned in May 2018 for conservatorship so he could take health and financial decisions for Nichelle. At the time, she was diagnosed with dementia.
Kyle stated that part of why he filed for conservatorship was because Gilbert transferred Nichelle’s home onto his name in 2017. After the petition, Kyle moved to California to help Nichelle with her finances; he claimed that his mother was “completely underwater at her own bank.” In January 2019, the court appointed Kyle as the conservator for Nichelle’s person and estate. But there was further controversy a few months later when a video recorded by Gilbert was released.
In the video, Nichelle said to Gilbert, “I didn’t give permission to have conservatorship over me.” Furthermore, when Kyle returned from an errand and wanted to take her home, she screamed, asking him to “get his hands off of me.” The video led to some questions regarding both Kyle and Gilbert. The legal battle between the two continued, with Kyle accusing Gilbert of elder abuse. Kyle said that Gilbert “exerted his undue influence and took control over Ms. Nichols’ assets and personal affairs.”
Where is Kyle Johnson Now?
Kyle then sold Nichelle’s California property in August 2021, moving her to New Mexico, where he lives with his wife of more than two decades. He said regarding the proceedings, “What I’ve been through, I feel, has not served my mother well, though I’m grateful for the decisions that have been made through the court. I’m looking forward to holding him (Gilbert) accountable and, foolish or not, demanding justice and ensuring that my mother is well-cared for and comfortable for the duration of her time here with us.”
While it is unclear what Kyle currently does, he did work as a liberal radio show host during the early 2000s. However, it was taken off-air when faced with a loss of advertising revenue because, at the time, it was the only liberal show on that particular radio station amidst a flurry of right-wing offerings. Kyle has also worked as a communications director in the past.
Read More: Where is Angelique Fawcette Now?