Reno Fontana Vs. Elvis Presley Palm Springs Home

Reno Fontana Vs. Elvis Presley Palm Springs Home 4.29/5 (85.88%) 17 votes

Demands Top Search Engine Ranking for His Side of Story

Elvis Presley Graceland West in Palm Springs

Desert Vortex

Elvis Presley Graceland West in Palm Springs

PALM SPRINGS, CA – In our third installment for our series involving the conflicted evolution of ownership concerning the Elvis Presley home we present the disgruntled response from Reno Fontana who is contesting his foreclosure eviction from the property.

After ten years living in the former summer home of Elvis Presley, Reno Fontana was evicted and he was accused of removing items from the home that did not belong to him. He says he is the victim of what he calls a “fraud-closure” and that everything he removed from the estate was his personal property.

We must make it clear to our readers that Mr. Fontana’s allegation that the people that took action against him are frauds is just that, an allegation. We take pains to mention this because we have been contacted by Reno Fontana regarding our coverage of his eviction.

Reno Fontana is alleging in an email we just received that we have not accurately represented his side of the story. He is threatening to file suit against us.

Reno Fontana

Desert Vortex

Reno Fontana

This publication is not in the business of purposely omitting the viewpoint of our sources on a story we cover. We print them with attribution. We will not keep from our readers Reno Fontana’s view that those that evicted him are frauds. We also will not omit views of sources that Reno Fontana does not like. It is not our job to take sides.

Reno Fontana also has some very unrealistic views about search engine rankings. In an email we received from him he suggests that we must place a story that is favorable to him in the top position of Google and other search engine results. That request is both absurd and objectionable.

Manipulating Search Engine Results

We have no authority over Google or Bing or any other search engine that allows us to dictate how their search engines place our stories in the results of an internet search. That notion is absurd. We find it highly objectionable to have received a request that we somehow manipulate the news in that manner.

Reno Fontana did make one request that we are happy to comply with. He asked us to post the emails sent to Desert Vortex News by Reno Fontana. Those emails are below.

We accepted Reno Fontana’s invitation to meet and to accept materials that he wanted us to see the he says explain his position. We wrote him on four occasions with an invitation to meet. He never got back to us to set up that meeting.

The first article in our series discussed the Reno Fontana foreclosure, the second discussed an artist who alleged Reno Fontana did not pay him. This, the third, provides Reno Fontana a forum to air his side of the story.


To: Desert Vortex News
From: Reno Fontana
Dated: 3/6/2013 9:17:50 AM
Subject: Your Howe article

Dear Mr Gray, On March 1, 2013, I sent you an em saying I’d like to get together early this week and provide a documented rebuttal to attorney Rubin’s allegations as we previously discussed.

However, prior to you and I meeting and to my amazement, you printed a second article relying on Mr Howe’s charges against me w/o contacting me for the other side of the story or confirming his baseless claims PRIOR to our meeting!

I’ve had over 150 newspaper articles published and I am well schooled on the journalistic standards by which I must abide. The bar is set high by the mainstream media, and rightfully so. It is wrong, ethically and morally, to put in print inflammatory and biased accounts about a person or their business without a complete investigation by the writer of the facts.

I am meeting my attorney to discuss legal recourse against the individuals who are promoting these slanderous allegations against me and my company. Any new court action will also include all those responsible for publishing (i.e. desert vortex) and perpetuating these untruthful remarks about me.

My trust in you to report balanced and accurately in light of your most recent story, is now minimal at best, and non-existent at worst.

If you want to regain my favor and see for yourself documentation that wholly debunks the claims by Mr Rubin and Mr Howe, then I would suggest that you show your sincerity and desire to report from a neutral perspective by printing all the correspondence between you and I. This will prove to me, my legal team, and your readers, that indeed the name of Dean Gray is one of honor and fairness.

Please have this matter as requested above at the top of the page when someone does an internet search of my name. You somehow managed to have both negative and woefully inaccurate articles you have written about me to take a billboard position in that your two damning articles are the first thing internet readers see upon searching my name.

Contrary to your claim that I’ve said this 9 year legal battle is not worth the trouble, you are mistaken. I have never said such a thing to anyone, and I’ve never thought it in my most private moments alone with myself. I was wrongfully foreclosed and evicted, and that will be proven at trial on May 20. I will fight for 9 more years in court if need be to see justice done.

Respectfully, Reno Fontana


Reno Fontana perfidiously spoke with this publication by telephone, promising to meet and share supporting documents. That never happened. The following are earlier emails contesting coverage in The Desert Sun and making a promise to deliver.


To: Desert Vortex News
From: Reno Fontana
Dated: 3/1/2013 8:50 PM
Subject: Follow Up Article

Hi dean, this has been a very busy week. A friend showed me a story The Desert Sun/Bruce Fessier printed this week in which Fessier said I “gutted” the property before leaving. I called Fessier twice but he apparently is avoiding my calls. The property of course was left in good shape w/o any damage whatsoever and can be documented so by the video and photos we took with the sheriff deputy’s present. Let’s speak early next week so that you may document and report my side of the story. Thank you. Reno


To: Desert Vortex News
From: Reno Fontana
Dated: 2/22/2013 10:10 PM
Subject: Follow Up Article

Hi Dean, I’ve known of your work for quite sometime. Never thought I’d be one of your topics though:)

Your overall story (other than Rubin’s remarks which were all you had at the time to consider) was actually quite good. There are some points not as they happened but otherwise I enjoyed reading your professionally written work.

I’ll give you a call Saturday. Looking forward to speaking with you and making a new friend in the journalism business.

Kindly, Reno

Have you done business with Reno Fontana or Lori (Laurie) Whittier? Let’s talk. Please contact us here.

PALM SPRINGS, CA – June 6, 2013; While the Elvis Presley property will soon be back in court to decide the fate of the Reno Fontana claim, two businesswomen may be making plans.

Elvis Presley House Trial & Tribulations
PALM SPRINGS, CA – March 14, 2013; Over 40 court cases and people litigated by Reno Fontana – Research just beginning on former occupant of Palm Springs home formerly owned by Elvis Presley.
PALM SPRINGS, CA – March 4, 2013; The artist says his art belong to the Elvis Presley home, not Reno Fontana. The iconic silhouette of Elvis bolted to the chimney became a symbol that this was the Palm Springs home of Elvis. The artwork is now gone and ownership disputed. The police are involved and Reno Fontana, the former caretaker, is not talking.

Elvis Left The Building And So Has Reno Fontana
PALM SPRINGS, CA – February 21, 2013; He was claims an unfair eviction from the Elvis Presley home. Evis left the building long ago. The latest owner, Reno Fontana, stayed for nearly ten years until recently evicted, ending tours and private parties.
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Dean M Gray

Writer, Artist & Publisher at Desert Vortex News
Dean started in the newspaper business at the age of nine earning 90 cents a week walking 3 miles delivering a newspaper door to door. He then began writing his way out of a paper bag and traveling uphill.

For over 40 years Dean has been published in a variety of small newspapers and magazines. As publisher he founded an alternative city weekly newspaper in 2008 and published over 200 uninterrupted issues over 4 years to over 20,000 readers via 800 locations (and online) before selling the business.

Dean is a Master Carpenter and the author of the biography of Hilda M Gray, desert homesteader.

In 2014 he was appointed Planning Commissioner for the city of Desert Hot Springs, California.

Dean M Gray is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors and lives in Desert Hot Springs, California.

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