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Tommy Morrison Case (17-1537) Reaches U.S. Supreme Court Friday November 16, 2018

By Robert Brizel, Head Real Combat Media Boxing Correspondent

Case (17-1537) Tommy Morrison versus Quest Et Al will reach the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday, November 16, 2018, and will argue in its filing QUEST withheld scientific data, and acted with malice or oppression; and fought science” for years. The case will argue Quest labs never tested for the HIV virus, and its lab reports falsifying HIV infected status were misleading and dangerous, to the detriment and ruination of former world heavyweight champion Tommy Morrison’s boxing career. Morrison died in 2013, and what he actually died from is part of the controversy. Despite the fact his widow, Tricia Morrison, filed the case in the year after he died, the Tommy Morrison case contains many intriguing facts. However, unlike Muhammad Ali’s case before the high court, Ali was alive, but Morrison is not alive to argue his case, which could contribute to the high court’s decision to hear the case or not.

In a Real Combat Media international interview exclusive, Tricia Morrison, the widow of former World Heavyweight champion Tommy ‘The Duke’ Morrison, explains her upcoming case against the Nevada State Athletic Commission, which will reach the United States Supreme Court shortly. The case, a longstanding controversy, argues the Nevada State Athletic Commission falsely announced Tommy Morrison tested positive for the HIV virus, when the company responsible for providing the information, Quest Diagnostics, never tested Tommy or anyone else for the virus in the first place.

Robert Brizel: “Tricia, when was the latest ruling in Tommy’s case?”

Tricia Morrison: On October 1, 2018, the eight member United States Supreme Court denied my Writ of Certiorari, along with over 800 other cases. So, it wasn’t personal at all. They could do the same thing again. That decision was made before Brett Kavanaugh was sworn in as a United States Supreme Court Justice. In my petition for a rehearing, I state there were only eight justices on the court, and I am entitled to nine justices. They could do the same thing (turn all the cases involved down again). Muhammad Ali (his appeal to regain his professional boxing license) and Tommy Morrison are the only cases to reach the United States Supreme Court involving professional boxers.”

Robert Brizel: “What is the ultimate objective of your petition (on Tommy’s behalf) to the United States Supreme Court)?

Tricia Morrison: “Two things. First, the Nevada State Athletic Commission had fraudulently claimed to the lower courts under oath (and to Tommy’s fans) that NSAC section 467.027 section 3B existed in 1996, requiring boxers to have an HIV test. There was never (such) a rule in 1996 that any boxer had to have an HIV test. To this day, the NSAC is violating the Administrative Procedures in Nevada and nationwide, based on a notice and comment, based on a notice you are going to bring in this rule, and people have to comment on it, and scientific evidence has to be provided supporting it.”

Robert Brizel: “Supporting it?”

Tricia Morrison: “Exactly. They never did that. The second point in my petition of rehearing is that Quest Diagnostics Incorporated did not test for the HIV virus, even though the NSAC claimed they did at the time, causing my late husband Tommy to be disqualified (from boxing).”

Robert Brizel: “What tests did Quest Diagnostics perform at the time?”

Tricia Morrison: “the tests Quest did (at that time) were for RNA and DNA, antibodies which are not contagious or infectious, tests which have nothing to do with HIV, which Quest Diagnostics has known for decades. So, any lab report Quest provided to the NSAC was not confirmation of any disease.”

Robert Brizel: “The court accepted your refiled petition?”

Tricia Morrison: “It was refiled on the date it was written, October 23, 2018, and received on October 25, 2018. If there are no deficiencies, the case gets docketed. It is case 17-1537, Morrison versus Quest et al., which includes John Hyatt, a phony fake physician and pathologist who claimed he read the Morrison report, and Dr. Margaret Goodman who was instrumental in sabotaging Tommy’s comeback attempt in the State of Nevada in 2007. Also, Mark Ratner, who was the Executive Commissioner of the Nevada State Athletic Commission who delivered Tommy’s so-called HIV diagnosis to a third party’ amd then the Nevada State Athletic Commission (itself) for keeping Tommy out of boxing based on a phone call from Quest. This produced a lab report for the first time 20 years later which named a new physician Dr. Robert Voy, who never ran any tests or drew blood. Quest tampered with that report by putting his name down on that report.”

Robert Brizel: “Tony Holden played a part in Tommy’s career and acted the part of manager when all this went public. What was Tony Holden’s official title to Tommy?”

Tricia Morrison: “Tony Holden portrayed himself as Tommy’s manager, but in a deposition he states he never had a signed contract with Tommy. The only contract Tony Holden had was with Don King on February 10, 1996, and that should open some eyes.”

Robert Brizel: “Was Tommy aware of all of the details you are now describing to me?”

Tricia Morrison: “No, Tommy was not. Tommy described the discrimination against him in regards to the entire facts of the case before he died. After he died, I filed the case on July 24, 2014. With due diligence, I received a post mortem report which scientifically stated Tommy did not have the HIV virus, any AIDs defining diseases, or other abnormalities in his bloodstream. Before he died, Tommy wrote on a heart shaped block ‘Don’t give up my love!’ (my inspiration to fight on).”

Robert Brizel: “Did the news media fail Tommy?”

Tricia Morrison: “Tommy’s viewpoint was the news media was ridiculous. The news media, Tommy felt, had discriminated against him because of the Stigma placed on him by the Nevada State Athletic Commission and Quest Diagnostics since 1996, with their mutual false claim of an HIV diagnosis on Tommy (which no test ever took place for, which he did not have, and ruined his career, the heart of the U.S. Supreme Court case).”

Robert Brizel: “You stated Tommy fired John Brown as his manager in 1995.”

Tricia Morrison: “Yes, Tommy sued John Brown in 1996 for misappropriating funds. The case ends when Tommy turned to drugs after he was kicked out of boxing. Tony Holden took over the case for Tommy, and it ended without a judgment. There was no decision or award for either side.”

Robert Brizel: “Tommy had a blood test done on July 2012. Can you reveal the results?”

Tricia Morrison: “Tommy had blood drawn in July 2012 when he was still alive. The blood was sent to Mass General Hospital in Boston, independent of Quest. Tommy’s blood report came back HIV negative, with no other viral abnormalities, and Mass General photo imaged Tommy’s blood to 15 thousand parts magnification. The second blood test was performed post mortem (as previously discussed), and Tommy’s blood came back HIV negative/undetectable for the HIV virus.”

Robert Brizel: “Do you ever see Tommy in your dreams?”

Tricia Morrison: “Yes. Tommy often wanted to meet Michael Bentt again. He appears in my dreams, laughing and sparring with him. I have spoken since Tommy’s death with fellow boxers Michael Bentt, Jose Ribalta, Rob Calloway, Donnie LaLonde, Earnie Shavers, Leon Spinks, Ray Mercer and Bob Mirovic.”

Robert Brizel: “Tommy’s tombstone does not state ‘husband’.”

Tricia Morrison: “Because Tommy’s mother Diana chose not to put him down as ‘husband’. I must say, though, she gave birth to one of the most adorable human beings on the planet. Tommy wanted his ashes put in boxing gloves and distributed to those people who were with him in good times and bad times. I have a short list.”

Robert Brizel: “When Tommy began his comeback, was it serious?”

Tricia Morrison: “After ten years, it was as serious as it could be. In 2010 and 2011, Tommy wanted to get back into the ring as the oldest heavyweight champion in the world.”

Robert Brizel: “Tommy started to fade after botched surgery.”

Tricia Morrison: “Twelve feet of surgical gauze was left to rot in his chest for one week, until it was discovered and removed on December 8, 2011. The home health nurse found it. That night his right leg gave way, and Tommy’s head went straight through the wall. He landed on his neck, and that was the beginning of 21 months in and out of septic shock. It affected his breathing, eating, talking, and was his downfall. Eight months after the surgery, in, 2012, Tommy could not talk as half of his vocal cords were paralyzed. Even though Tommy could not talk (at that point) he understood everything until he was placed into a medically induced coma two days before he died in Omaha, Nebraska. Tommy died on September 1, 2013, of cardiac arrest, septicemia, and multiple organ failure, due to the blood infection caused by the gauze.”

Robert Brizel: “The media fed on the Tommy misinformation which was distributed like a pack of hyenas feeding on a dead pigeon.”

Tricia Morrison: “Dr. Elizabeth Iola represented Quest, and made the telephone call to the NSAC saying Tommy had tested positive for HIV. Her evidence was her lab report, which contained to tests for HIV. Another key point is back in 1996 HIV tests, when administered, took three weeks to process before getting the results, not overnight. This discovery is a relatively recent new development which is not even mentioned in the case.”

Robert Brizel: “What was Tommy’s relationship with the various boxing halls of fame??

Tricia Morrison: “Tommy visited the International and World Boxing Halls of Fame in the United States. The Berlin, Germany Boxing Hall of Fame wants to induct Tommy next year. Tommy loved the International Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota. I donated his boots, and notes on his career, to them.”

Reader’s Note: The difference between Muhammad Ali and Tommy Morrison at the point of their cases reaching the United States Supreme Court is Ali was alive and wanted to resume his career after refusing to be drafted into the Vietnam War. Morrison has been dead over five years, and the lack of timeliness will be weighed versus the force of Mr. Morrison’s case against Quest. The judgment of this reporter is Tricia Morrison’s case has legitimate merit and factual evidence, but the lawsuit would have been better served by Tommy if it were filed and claimed immediately in 1996 when he was alive.

Tommy Morrison’s U.S. Supreme Court case has provided key facts in terms of what happened to Morrison as it has worked its way through the court levels in the past four years. Also, Morrison did not present a new HIV for the public’s satisfaction test back in 2007 when he made his comeback, which would have resolved all question. If Quest did not test for the virus, and no overnight test result was possible, where did the Morrison HIV test claim the NSAC presented come from, and why? Owing to the passage of time, Tricia Morrison’s questions may never be answered, or in the least, completely answered before she departs the United States to visit her mother in her native country, the United Kingdom, shortly. She will be in ‘the corner’ on Friday, November 16, 2018, for Tommy Morrison’s last and most valiant fight. This reporter wishes her well. The ghost of Tommy Morrison will have his last hurrah. Mrs. Morrison, whose sons are both in the states, will be remaining in the United States for good after the soul and spirit of Tommy Morrison faces the final judgment day before the high court of nine.





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Robert Brizel - Head Boxing Correspondent
Robert Brizel - Head Boxing Correspondent
Robert is the Head Boxing Correspondent for Real Combat Media Boxing since 2013. Robert is also a photographer and ringside reporter for the RCM Tri State region which includes NJ, NY and PA. Robert conducts exclusive interviews, provides historical boxing articles and provides editorial ringside coverage of major boxing events. You can contact or follow Robert on Facebook and by email at