Evidence Suggests Utahn Deserved Howard Hughes' Inheritance

Evidence Suggests Utahn Deserved Howard Hughes' Inheritance

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John Hollenhorst Reporting Are you ready for a new twist in a 29 year old mystery? A veteran detective says he's found new evidence proving secretive billionaire Howard Hughes really did write a will leaving a big chunk of his fortune to a humble gas station operator in Utah.

In 1976 Utahn Melvin Dummar became the world's most famous gas station man. Now the big Oscar movie "The Aviator" is reviving memories of the world's most eccentric billionaire, Howard Hughes.

Dummar's job today is selling and delivering meat in rural Nevada. He says Howard Hughes intended to leave him a fortune, but he never got a nickel.

Melvin Dummar: “I just know that I got ripped off, and nobody would believe me.”

Dummar's story was told in the movie "Melvin & Howard". He says he found Hughes lying in the desert and gave him a ride to Las Vegas. Later, when Hughes died in 1976, a handwritten will turned up. It named Dummar to get one-sixteenth of the Hughes estate. A jury decided the will was a fake.

But now a retired organized crime investigator for the FBI says he's found convincing new evidence. Gary Magnesen started investigating several years ago after he was introduced to Melvin Dummar.

Gary Magnesen, Retired F.B.I. Agent: “I thought Melvin was a kook. Didn't make any sense at all. Why was Howard Hughes out in the desert in the middle of nowhere? Why did he look like that? Didn't make any sense at all.”
”But now you believe it?”
”I believe it completely.”

Tonight at ten, we'll have more on Magnesen's new evidence. And we'll hear Melvin Dummar's reaction to the first good news he's heard on this subject in nearly three decades.

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