Grew Up “Brother and Sister” and Kept Relationship Secret (Full Episode) | Paternity Court


Please be seated. Hello, Your Honor. Hello, Ron. This is the case of
Walters v. Rogers and Sanders.
Thank you.
Good day everyone. ALL: Good day, Your Honor. Miss Walters, you claim
the defendant was
a childhood family friend who got you pregnant
and now refuses to do anything for your three-year-old son,
Rylan. WALTERS: Yes, Your Honor JUDGE LAKE:
You’ve petitioned the court for a DNA test to prove
that he is Rylan’s father
so he will finally step up. Yes, Your Honor. Mr. Rogers, you say
you spent two months in jail for unpaid child support
and are currently behind more than $2500 in payments
for a child who is not yours. Yes, Your Honor. You and your mother
are here to prove that you are not
Rylan’s biological father. Is that correct? Yes, Your Honor. So, Ms. Walters,
how do you know
he’s the dad? I slept with
another man weeks prior to
even conceiving my son
and we did use protection. And at the time
I conceived my son, he was the only person
that I was having sex with, without using protection. I’ve known them
for 20 years now. We grew up together, we did
family vacations together,holidays, we were always…Our families
were always together.
We grew up, we dated,that didn’t really work out,
in middle school.
The feelings came back
once we got in high school
and we started
sleeping together again.
His mom didn’t approve
of us being together. We weren’t in a relationship. I didn’t know y’all
were together. Yeah, my mom
didn’t know. I had no clue. Nobody in the family,
on either side, had any recognition
of anything the whole time. So you all kept this a secret? ROGERS: Yes, ma’am. And you were having
unprotected sex? BOTH: Yes, Your Honor. ROGERS: When she found out
she was pregnant, you know, we
were best friends. We had been friends
growing up our whole lives. Like, we was together,
you know what I mean?
All the time. Not in a relationship,
but we were friends. She texts me one day. Sent me a picture
while I was at work, and it was a sticky note
that said, “Six weeks pregnant.” I text back,
“Congratulations. “Tell the other guy,
congratulations.” Is that what you really felt? ROGERS: Yes, ma’am, that is honestly
what I believed. WALTERS: Your Honor… Because she was
in a relationship
with this other guy. So why would it automatically
be mine, you know
what I’m saying? But were you sleeping
with her during
the window of conception? Yes, ma’am.
We had slept together… I was not in a relationship,
Your Honor, with anybody. JUDGE LAKE:
She says she’s pregnant, you say,
“Good luck to you.” And now you’re by yourself? It was hard. He didn’t come to
any doctor’s appointments. I was doing it by myself. Then once I got
maybe seven, eight months, “Oh, I’ll be there
if he’s mine. “I’ll take care of him.
Don’t put me
on child support.” Once I had him,
he came to the hospital. He left the hospital
before my son was born. Your Honor, in my head, okay,
me and this girl had been
through everything together. Known each other
since we was in diapers. I felt like she was trying
to push me as the father ’cause she knew
we would always be there. Our families
would be there… SANDERS: Her dad and I
were best friends. We took
family trips together. All that’s been ruined
since all this has happened. So the truth is
you all grew up like
brothers and sisters, cousins, ’cause, I mean… WALTERS:It was my home
away from home, I mean,
I was always with them.
ROGERS:Like you can
see in that picture.
Like, we was friends,
we was happy.
We was best friends
growing up,
literally best friends.
She was like one of
my children, Your Honor. Ever since this happened,
it’s just completely
killed everything. The families don’t hang out
no more, they… And so, Miss Sanders,
I can see this is
really upsetting you. I apologize for that. JUDGE LAKE: No!
You don’t have to apologize. You’re upset, ’cause,
first, you had no idea. No! I would have never
allowed them to spend days and nights
and all in my house, because to me,
they were like
brother and sister. So you would let her
spend the night because
she’s just like another child. SANDERS: She would spend
whole summers with us. She would spend weekends
with us. She, I mean, her dad
lived right down the road. And while he worked,
or whatever, she’d come,
stayed at my home. I didn’t feel the need
to supervise it, because they grew up together. Did you know if Miss Walters
was intimate with anyone else? Yes. Later on, I did,
because I found
a bunch of condoms in her stuff
when I went through it. Because I check… Your Honor, that was
from the Health Department. They give you condoms
at the Health Department. And that was
right after I went to
the Health Department, I went to her house. But the bottom-line is,
when you found them,
you said to yourself, “She must be
sexually active now.” SANDERS: Yes, Your Honor. But you weren’t
aware of that before. I had heard that… Because I loved her,
I didn’t listen
to the rumors. JUDGE LAKE: Did you ask her
about it once you found
those condoms? I did not. So when you first found out
she was pregnant… SANDERS: Mmm-hmm. …did you immediately say,
“My son could be the father,” or you felt like she… SANDERS: No. I got a phone call and said, “Lindsey’s pregnant
and she’s saying
Roy’s the father.” Well, Roy was with me
at the time. And I turned around
and asked him,
“Roy, did you know that?” He said, “That is
not my baby, Mama.” Did you know
at that time they had
been sleeping together? No, that was
when I found out. JUDGE LAKE: That was
when you found out? Yes. ROGERS: And, Your Honor,
I don’t get how… All right, I was not
in the delivery room
when he was born, so therefore,
my name is not on
that birth certificate. I’ve had no DNA established
the whole time
he has been in this world. How am I on child support?
I was out of town, working, when the court date was
set up for the DNA test. So I missed the court date,
automatically rules me
as the father. JUDGE LAKE: Yes. And I’m thinking,
“How am I on child support? “There’s been no DNA.
No birth certificate signed. “There is no connection
to me and that boy, “as him being mine,
at the moment.” JUDGE LAKE: But there’s
been a court date. ROGERS: Yes, ma’am. I can’t tell you how many men
stand before me and say, “Your Honor, I got this
court date in the mail. “It went to this address
and I had to work.” Or “It went to this address
and I knew that child
wasn’t mine, “so I just didn’t go.” Without understanding that
you can and you will be named the legal father
of that child, by default. I did not know that
at the time, Your Honor. I know you didn’t,
or you would have
been in court. Well, two weeks ago I was
on the way to the beach
for my sister’s birthday. And, well, my buddy
happened to be speeding,
cop pulls us over, gave my buddy a breathalyzer,
he failed it. So he locks him up in the car. So the cop puts him
in the car,
walks back up to me, and I heard him
call over his radio, “Roy Rogers has a warrant
out of Monroe County
for child neglect.” So then he instantly
threw me on
the back of the car, slammed me against the car,
and put me in handcuffs. I ended up going
to this little country jail. Where? I don’t know.
It’s not even a jail,
it’s a little barn thing. And they locked me up there
for three days. They don’t feed you
on weekends, but,
like, two times a day, it’s these little-bitty…
I don’t even know what it was, to be honest with you,
Your Honor. Then I had to wait till Monday
for Monroe County to drive
down there and pick me up and transport me
back to Monroe County
where I sat two months. JUDGE LAKE: Listen. What you’re explaining
right now, it happens
more often than you think. Before I did family law,
I was a criminal defense
attorney for many, many years. And we used to always say,
“The worst thing you can do
is get locked up on a Friday.” (AUDIENCE LAUGHING) JUDGE LAKE:
‘Cause you’re gonna
have to wait till Monday. It was a Friday, too. JUDGE LAKE: Oh, I know,
when you started
describing it, I said, “That was a Friday.” (CHUCKLES) Yes, ma’am. All right. I need to hear
some more testimony. We have a witness I’d like
to call to the stand, it’s your best friend,
Miss Walters. Ron, would you please
escort the witness
into the courtroom? Yes, ma’am. Thank you. Hello, ma’am. Hello. Thank you for joining us.
Please state your name
for the court. Rochelle Rogers. And, Miss Rogers, you are
Miss Walter’s best friend? Yes, ma’am. JUDGE LAKE: How long have
you known one another? Twenty-two years. Last name “Rogers”.
Sounds familiar. Yes. Yes, ma’am,
that’s my sister. (AUDIENCE MURMURING) JUDGE LAKE: Really? Yes, ma’am. So you and Miss Walters
are best friends ’cause
you all grew up together. ROCHELLE:Exactly.She was in the house
every other weekend,
every summer.
All the time I went up there,
she came down here.
We were together
all the time.
Every bit that
we could be together,
we could be together.
And you’re still
best friends today? Yes, Your Honor. WALTERS: Yes, Your Honor. Do you believe
your brother
is Rylan’s father? ROCHELLE: No, ma’am. JUDGE LAKE: Why? ROCHELLE: Well, because at
the time we were all young, we all done
our different things,
we were all partying. We were together every day,
all the time. Every time we went out,
we went out together, we done everything together, and I was aware of her
sleeping with the other guy. She also stated
the next morning that
she did sleep with him. That she did sleep
with the other guy. Then, six weeks later,
I’m staying at her house, she comes home,
she breaks down
on the floor, crying, because she finds
that she’s pregnant. At the time, she does not
know who the father is. At the time, do you know
she was sleeping with
your brother? Um, I did. Yes, ma’am. You did? So you knew they were
sleeping together, even when
your mother didn’t? ROCHELLE: Yes, ma’am. JUDGE LAKE: Keep going. She broke down
on the floor, crying, that little paper said
six weeks… I mean, that
she was six weeks pregnant. Um, she sent
a text to Roy, I’m not sure
what his response was. She was just crying,
like, lividly. Um, at the time she said
that she had two different
potential fathers, but when it all came out,
her being pregnant, her telling my mother,
and her father, who… That she was pregnant,
it was all directed
toward Roy. The other guy
was never an option. JUDGE LAKE: So you’re saying,
when she first found out, you were there for
the emotional breakdown when she realized
she was pregnant? Yes. JUDGE LAKE: And
in that moment, she admitted to you
that there were
two possible fathers? Yes, which I knew before
because of the partying, and she did say she slept
with the guy the morning
after she slept with him. And that was, you know,
weeks prior to this happening,
of course. Weeks prior to her finding out
she was pregnant. But when it all came out,
she did say, yes, that there was two
potential fathers. So when it came to the point
where she was just saying your brother
was the child’s father… Mmm-hmm. …did you tell anybody,
“Hey, she told me
there was another guy.” ROCHELLE: Yes, I did. So, Miss Walters, that is
not what you testified to
today in court. (AUDIENCE MURMURS) Miss Rogers,
your best friend,
his sister, is saying you were
open with her
right from the start. That there were
two possible fathers. When I told Mr. Rogers… that I slept with
this other man, it was
because out of anger. At the time that I found out
that I was pregnant
and I told him, his ex-girlfriend
was about to have his baby. And at the time, he… Yes, Your Honor, I have
a four-year-old son also. He was young and he didn’t
want to be responsible. So were you denying that
you were the father because you didn’t want
any more responsibility, or did you truly feel
like it was impossible
for you to be the father? ROGERS:I honestly believed
it was not mine, Your Honor.
And, Your Honor, we live
in a small town, like… Our town is not big at all,
where we’re from, and it’s just,
everybody knows everybody. So, you know,
word gets around. JUDGE LAKE: What have you
heard specifically? What I’ve heard,
when all this was going on,
when the conception… When she got pregnant
and all this, I was hearing from
multiple different people that she was sleeping
with multiple
different people, and not to believe
it was my child. That was what I was told. Your Honor, at this time
he was dating a girl, and she did not
like me at all. And she had fed him that,
“This is not your child. “He’s not yours,
he’s not gonna be yours. “I don’t like her and
this kid’s not gonna
be a part of you.” And he fed this into him
and he denied him. SANDERS: Your Honor,
I confronted her about that, about the rumors of
several different partners. And her exact words
was to me, “Doesn’t matter how many
partners I’ve had,
Roy’s the father.” ROGERS: Your Honor,
in my opinion… Wow. …there always should be
that little bit of doubt
in your mind. If there is… If you’re not
sleeping with one person for multiple months
and in a steady
relationship with them, and you are going around
and happen to sleep with
one or two more people, there should always
be a doubt in your head. So, Miss Rogers, since
you all are best friends,
and we’re testifying, and we’re here
to lay it on the line
and just tell the truth. Did you see, know, witness her involved with any other
person besides your brother and this other guy? I know for a fact there was
two people she was
sleeping with at the time, which is including my brother
and the other guy. I know that for a fact. But as far as her sleeping
with other, multiple men, I knew that there was
different people, but in that time period,
I couldn’t per se, “Oh, during that time period
she slept with three
or four different people.” But, during that time period,
I do know that
she slept with two people. And I believe that
it may have been like, “Okay, well, let me
just pin it on Roy “because we’re
lifelong friends. “And he’s always gonna
be there regardless.” No one’s ever going
to change, and on my… But this has torn
everybody apart. On my side, it put me
in a horrible situation, because Lindsey’s
my best friend, and this is my brother. So I can’t choose sides. I’m not gonna lose her
and I’m not gonna lose him, but then my mom comes in
and it’s killing her, because we all
grew up together. This is insane for them
to even be together like this. That’s crazy.
That’s not supposed to happen. We grew up, like, “This is my cousin,
this is my uncle.”Like, “This is my family.”They were never supposed
to have sexual contact at all.
It ruined my relationship
with them,
it ruined my relationship,
all of us together…
(CRYING) None of us
can hang out anymore. They ruined our whole
family unit. Everything. JUDGE LAKE: And I can see
that really hurts you. I can see that. That is correct, Your Honor.
Our families… Literally, it’s like they
despise each other now, when we was best friends. Best friends. So you all both have
a part to play in this. And this is what
we end up with. Two families that once
loved each other, spent time together,
supported one another, are now torn apart. And you all
aren’t even together. We… WALTERS: Never were. We went from
talking every day,
being best friends, to barely communicating. And to a point where
we didn’t communicate at all for months and months
and months at a time. That’s just sad,
and most importantly, there is
a beautiful child here.Three years old,
doesn’t know
who his father is.
And then if you are
the biological father, are the two families
going to be able to
get along enough… I don’t think,
Your Honor… JUDGE LAKE:
…to support this child? I think there’s been
too much between us. ROCHELLE: It’ll never
be the same. And then if he’s not your biological child, will there be reason enough
to mend this rift and to put these families
back together? It’s possible, Your Honor,
but there’s no telling with the different family
members that are in
each other’s family. It’s obvious Mr. Rogers
and his mother have doubt. Yes, Your Honor. JUDGE LAKE:
I need to know from you. Are there any other
possible fathers? Your Honor, the time
that I got pregnant
was around New Years’, and the time I slept
with the other man was
beginning or mid-December. At the hospital,
I made sure
they checked the dates and everything,
just to make sure,
’cause he told me, “I won’t take a DNA test
unless the other guy
takes a DNA test.” Also, there’s no point
if he’s not the father. Yeah, But that’s what
I’m saying, you don’t know
for 100% fact who is the father
when there is more than
one dude in the picture. You don’t have
100% fact of that. JUDGE LAKE: So, Miss Walters,
you submitted photos of your son Rylan
and Mr. Rogers as a child. And you believe there is
a distinct similarity. WALTERS:Yes, ma’am, I do.JUDGE LAKE:Mr. Rogers,
do you see it?
ROGERS:No, Your Honor.You don’t?I see her dad
more than anything. I see her dad. WALTERS: They have
the same features. The same hair, the eyes… The eyebrows, the mouth shape, the ears, everything. SANDERS: I see a lot of
Lindsey in him, Your Honor. JUDGE LAKE:How about you,
sister, do you see anything?
ROCHELLE:I believe he looks
like Miss Walter’s dad.
JUDGE LAKE:
What about this other guy? Does anyone know
what he looks like? WALTERS: Nothing like my son. He’s really tall, skinny… ROGERS: Well,
in all honesty… All right! I think it’s time
for the results.
Ron, I’m ready. When I slept with
this other man, it was
because out of anger. In the case of
Walters v. Rogers/Sanders,
when it comes to
three-year-old Rylan Walters, it has been determined
by this court, Mr. Rogers, you… …are his father. (SNIFFLES) I’m sorry. Both of you all burst into
tears in that moment,
what do you feel? Your Honor,
I grew up without a father, so I know what it’s like, and I told myself from
day one, I was not gonna
be that person. And now that I know
I am his father, I can step up
and actually be his father. JUDGE LAKE: Good.
How do you feel, Miss Walters,
are you happy? I’m relieved. I’ve waited
for this for so long. My son deserves
to have his father there. He’s missed out on
almost four years of his life. JUDGE LAKE: How do feel, Mom? I feel guilty now. (SNIFFLES) For not
being there for him. And how about you?
This is now,
it’s your nephew. It’s not just
your best friend’s child,
it’s your nephew. (CRYING) I’m so happy. JUDGE LAKE: You are? I’m so happy for Roy, and I’m so happy
for her and Mom. The whole reason Mom wasn’t
being a big part of his life was because
she had so much doubt. And now he can have
a fulltime grandparent, fulltime Dad, fulltime Mom,
fulltime Aunt. He can have a fulltime family. (AUDIENCE APPLAUDING) JUDGE LAKE: Yes. You know, I couldn’t have
said it any better. A fulltime family. I so hope that this moment
of clarity and truth will help to bring these
families back together. But this young, innocent life, I think, is the perfect seed.
Right? So that we can grow
a new beginning
between you all. You know you love each other. Now we just
have to grow that love. Grow the forgiveness,
and most importantly, grow and raise up
this beautiful child. I wish you all
the very best of luck. We have counseling for you
right now, take advantage of it. BOTH: Thank you, Your Honor. Good luck to you. Court is adjourned.

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