Husband Denies Baby After Wife’s Fling and Baby’s Features (Full Episode) | Paternity Court

Please be seated. Hello, Your Honor. Hello. This is the case of
Shomo v. Cleckler and Freeman.
Thank you, Jerome. You’re welcome. Good day, everyone. CLECKLER: Good day,
Your Honor. Ms. Shomo, you confess
you had a weekend fling
with a coworker while married to
the defendant, Mr. Cleckler. Now because you admit to being
intimate with both men during
the same 2-day period, you now say you have
no idea who fathered your
11-month-old son, Theseus. SHOMO:Yes, Your Honor.Now, Mr. Cleckler,
you argue Ms. Shomo has
already done this once before. And while you have doubts,
you’re hoping
this baby is yours. Yes, Your Honor. Mr. Freeman, you admit
you are that coworker and you’re the second
possible biological father. You state that
if it’s determined you are indeed the child’s biological
father, you want full custody. Yes, Your Honor. All right, so Ms. Shomo,
what made you stray from your marriage
and possibly conceive
two children outside of your relationship? Your Honor, I was young.
I was going through
some difficulty. Feeling unwanted
by my husband,
Mr. Cleckler. And I felt Mr. Freeman
was giving me more
attention than my husband was. I mean, we’d been
together for 10 years.His friends was more
important at the time,
and he just wanted to
run around and not be
a family man. My friends always said
I was with you. If we went somewhere
with my friends,
you was there. That wasn’t true. He had left me
and the kids in the house,
Your Honor. And went outside
with his friends
and just left us. At times I wanted to
watch movies and spend
time with him, and go to the park.
He didn’t wanna do that. He just wasn’t showing
me no affection. So, yes, I felt like
there was something
more out there. Mr. Cleckler, did you know
about your wife’s affair? No, Your Honor.
I did not know
about the affair. Nothing about it? CLECKLER: No, Your Honor. She was out late at night,
12:00, 1:00 with the kids. We already got three
previous children, Your Honor. And I told her…
She been doing this,
like I said, for a while. I’m not gonna put up
with this. So I packed
my stuff and I left. And then later we got to
talking on the phone,
and reconciled… And so,
you were having troubles. You kind of broke up for
a minute, took a break,
and got back together. Yes, Your Honor. JUDGE LAKE: But you
had no idea? No, Your Honor.
She told me she was
being completely faithful. Your Honor, at that time,
he also was seeing somebody. As I was. That’s not true, Your Honor. I wanna talk about
the time of conception. JUDGE LAKE: How did
Mr. Freeman get
in the picture? Well, me and him
were friends, Your Honor. You know, he just showed
me more affection
than my husband did. And it led to something else. Mr. Freeman, when you met
Ms. Shomo, you knew
she was a married woman? Yes, Your Honor. (AUDIENCE MURMURING) And, you know, she was saying
that he was cheating.
You know what I’m saying? Talking to other females
and whatever, so… You know, so we started
conversating and talking
and it went from there. And so when she got pregnant,
did she tell you? A couple months
into the pregnancy. Okay. When did you
find out, Mr. Cleckler? A couple months into
the pregnancy, as well. Did she tell you that there
was another possible father? CLECKLER:No, Your Honor.So after you told him,
did you immediately
tell him? No, I completely shut him
out of my life. Yes. I did. I was trying to do
the right thing because,
like I said, I was… (STAMMERING) I’m young.
And I wasn’t happy. Your Honor, you can’t
use “young” as
an excuse for everything. Ah, we’re the same age.
I don’t have
any other children by anybody else, you know.
I’m not making
the same mistakes. I do admit
that I did do my dirt
in the first couple years of our relationship
and after our first child. But I gave her ample time
to do the same thing
that I did, Your Honor. Most men wouldn’t do that.
But she took it beyond. I never brought a child
into the relationship. And, Your Honor, luckily… She didn’t even respect
our marriage, Your Honor. We are legally married.
She didn’t even
respect it. Luckily,
he did not have… What’s that a copy of? Our marriage license. Jerome, let
me see that. Luckily, he did not have
children with somebody else. We was together
from high school.Three months after
we started dating,
she had gotten pregnant.
We had a daughter.Like I said,
I was doing my dirt.
She decided she didn’t want
to be with me anymore. She started seeing
somebody else. That was a reality check
for me, Your Honor. JUDGE LAKE: Mmm-hmm. It let me know that, hey,
I lost something. I really
want this person back. Your Honor, this would have
never came down to this if he didn’t cheat on me
with his best friend’s aunt. (AUDIENCE JEERING) JUDGE LAKE: Really? It completely ruined my life
until this day. I said I did my dirt. It’s because of him is why we are
in this position now. And that I meant
to do this to him?
No, I did not. Did I want to be with him
through the 10 years?
No, I did not. It was the fact…
For my girls,
I am with him, but… It really seems like
this is hurting you
as you’re speaking. JUDGE LAKE: Where’s
the pain coming from? I was in love! And he cheated on me! SHOMO: I mean, all my love
was to him. I didn’t want nobody but him.
But when he cheated on me
with his best friend’s aunt, that broke me. ‘Cause I didn’t do nothin’.
All I did was stay home
and take care of my… Take care of him. All he wanted in the beginning
was his friends. Your Honor, I… So I grew separable.
Yes, I did. And… Who doesn’t make mistakes?
I made a mistake. So basically you cheated
out of hurt and revenge. I was moving on. And when I married him,
he was the only man I wanted
to marry in this lifetime. JUDGE LAKE: So you
were pregnant. SHOMO: Yes. And you believed
your husband was a father. Yes, Your Honor. So when the baby was born,
were you just a happy family? SHOMO:I was, because I
thought God finally blessed me
with a child
who looked like me.
JUDGE LAKE: Mmm-hmm. My girls look
completely like him. But my boys look
just like me. So, yes, I was
blessed to have a son
who looked like me. And with Chris…
I mean, with Mr. Cleckler,
I really thought he was his. JUDGE LAKE: You really
believed it? Yes, Your Honor. So, Ms. Shomo,
in the first stages
of your son’s life, his beautiful brown skin
and hair… And I can see that.
When you had him,
you said, “He looks like me.” Yes. Native… I can
see this in him. Yes, Your Honor. Yes. And then as he got older,you just didn’t see
Mr. Cleckler in him.
SHOMO:Right.One thing I read is that
in the court papers you said that Mr. Freeman and you
used protection when
you all were together. Yes. You did? Yes. Yes,
Your Honor. And yet… Was it
even more surprising to you when you started to see,
or feel like he was looking like
Mr. Freeman? Because you all
used protection. Yes, Your Honor.
But within that, Mr. Freeman wanted
a baby with me, and he had told me that
he wanted a baby with me. (STAMMERING) It wasn’t
like that. I said… And he said he was going to
get me pregnant,
one way or the other. Not like that.
No, Your Honor. It wasn’t like that. I said So, yes, we did
use a condom. I’d be willing to
have a baby by you. But she was married
at the time. I wasn’t gonna just
ditch a baby off
on her like that. The condom busted,
you know. Hey, I can’t do
nothin’ about it. SHOMO: He smirked
about it afterward. I ain’t smirk. Come on! JUDGE LAKE: So are you
suggesting that he
planned that? FREEMAN: No. I… Yes, Your Honor.
I kind of do. FREEMAN: No. No, I didn’t. Because I told
him repeatedly I did not want a child.
I was not ready. No, I ain’t playing here. When the baby was born,
did you think anything more
about Mr. Freeman? Not until Theseus was
getting a little older. I… I seen difference in him. JUDGE LAKE: Mmm-hmm. And I wanted to
tell Mr. Freeman because there’s
a possibility
that it is his son and I don’t want to
take no life from him
with his son. So once Theseus got older,
you began to see, what? His features change? SHOMO: Yes, Your Honor. And you began
to think he could be
Mr. Freeman’s child? Yes, Your Honor. Now, was Mr. Cleckler
noticing those changes,
as well? Yes. And it was a source of
discontentment in your home? Yes. Okay. And I was seeing
me and Mr. Cleckler
separating a little bit. We wasn’t so close,
’cause he would… He would come to me
and be like, you know,
“He’s getting darker.” “He’s looking different.”
And I felt so much guilt
in myself. (STAMMERING)
And I was like, you know,
I have to get this done. For my son I have to
get this done, because I can’t
have no more guilt on me. I know I made the mistakes. But I know I’m trying to
change it before my son gets
old enough to where he don’t have a father. So when you approached
Mr. Freeman, how did you get back
in contact with him
to let him know? Because you said
you had shut him out
of your life. He just came and saw him
one day while I was walking. He walked up to me. And he was like,
“So this is little…
Little man right here.”And I was like, “Yes.”And he was like,
“You know what?
He kinda looks like me.”
But I didn’t know
if he was joking or whatever, but I was like,
“In a way he does.” And so, Mr. Freeman,
when you saw Theseus, immediately you felt like
he looked like you? I mean, right off the top,
I ain’t gonna lie, he didn’t too much look
like me because he was
looking more like her. Mmm-hmm. But when he…
As he was starting
to grow and grow, he was starting
to look like me. You know, so,
when he was
getting older he was just looking
like me to me.
That’s what I think. Mr. Cleckler,
when Theseus was born,
you were at the hospital. Yes, Your Honor. When you saw the baby,
when he was born, did you think,
“Oh, he just looks
like my wife”? Yes, Your Honor, I… Or did you immediately
have a doubt? No, Your Honor.
Um, I had been teased
at work by my coworkers. Um, they would tell me
that he was gonna come
out with curly hair, or… (AUDIENCE LAUGHING) That’s what they said to me.
You know, they’d tease me. So they were teasing you. And, um, you know,
after she left they just… They kind of got
a little bit more
serious about it. And, um, I just… You know, my wife had
told me that she hadn’t
messed with nobody. So I believed my wife. I mean, before I had
a little doubt, and I would ask her, like,
late at night, “If you just tell me,
I won’t make
no deal out of it. “Just be honest with me.” JUDGE LAKE: Mmm-hmm. And she would cry
and she would ask me, “Why do you talk to
me like this?
Why you make me feel bad?” And I felt stupid.
I felt real dumb. And I felt like I was
hurting my wife because, you know,
I’m asking her
these questions. And what if she’s
really being
honest with me? JUDGE LAKE: Mmm-hmm. You know, I know the wedge
I’m driving there, but I have to ask. I feel obligated. But your gut was just
telling you you needed to
ask the questions. Yes, Your Honor.
And so at a certain
point I let it go. I believed her 100%. It wasn’t till
she left me
that I didn’t… You know, I found out
he could be
somebody else’s. JUDGE LAKE: So it wasn’t
until that time? No, not even whenever…You know, they’re cleaning
him up and they’re
saying skin color.
And I’m a nosy person.
I just asked
all types of questions. JUDGE LAKE: I can tell.
I’m just teasing. I am too.
So don’t feel bad. So they said something
about his color and, uh…
They said it was… I said, “What’s wrong
with his color?” They said,
“It’s off a little bit.” I asked,
“All that stuff on his back.
What is that?” ‘Cause it wasn’t
on my other babies. And they said it was
Mongolian spots. Which is common
in Native Americans, um, Mongolians, Asians, and, um, blacks. And I said, well… I mean, I wasn’t
thinking anything
because I’m Native, she’s Native. JUDGE LAKE: Right. You know, all of our family,
there’s at least one dark
person in the family. JUDGE LAKE: Absolutely. So… SHOMO: Your Honor, I have
Mississippi Choctaw
in my family too. And their skin is dark.
And they have curly hair. JUDGE LAKE: Yes. So first of all
I want to say to you, you made a joke about yourself
and said you’re nosy ’cause you asked
a bunch of questions, but the truth is you were
just being a dad
in that delivery room. Because that’s
what fathers do. Your baby comes out,
they’re talking
about your baby, you want to know
what’s going on. And coming from a person
that also asks
a lot of questions, I do, too,
that’s a good thing. And don’t ever
stop doing that. Yes, Your Honor. But I can understand
when you’re hearing
these things, your mind is
processing it all. Like, “Well, I’m Native
and she’s Native and…” You know, “Well, okay,
this still matches up. “So even though
I got this little,
funny, gut feeling, “and I got these questions
in the back of my mind, “this is still adding up to
where I believe I’m
this child’s father.”You’re married
so you were presumed
to be the father.
CLECKLER:Yes, Your Honor.Understood.And so, Mr. Freeman,
now one thing you said
in the beginning of this case is you said
you want full custody. Yes, I would love
to have full custody. I mean, I ain’t saying
I’m just trying to take him
away from them. She could see him
all she wants, you know. I’d never do that,
you know. I just want to
have him in my life.Well, I’ll tell you what.
The only way we’re all
going to move forward,
all of you,
is to have the results. And I think
we’re ready. Ready? (APPLAUSE) CLECKLER: Yes, we are. Here you go. Thank you. You’re welcome. (SIGHING) Before I read the results, I want to ask you,
Mr. Cleckler,
what are you hoping for today? If he’s mine, you know, I’m just gonna
take care of him like
I do my other kids. It’s not gonna change
either way how
I treat the kid. It’s just gonna change
financial-wise. That way I can
provide for my girls. I got two little girls
that’s his brother. He got another little boy
that’s his brother. I’ve been in
all their lives.
They know me. I’m not gonna treat
any of the kids
any different. Do you want to
repair your relationship
with your wife? I would love to, Your Honor,
but oil and water don’t mix. They just don’t. They just don’t mix. Would you describe both of you as oil
and water, Ms. Shomo? I just really don’t want
nothing to do with him but him be there
for his girls, Your Honor. I don’t want nothing
to do with him at all. Oil and water, oil and water. Just like what
Mr. Freeman said. I didn’t have a father
in my life. At all. And I want him
to have his daddy. SHOMO:That’s all I want.Mr. Freeman,
what are your hopes? I mean, if he’s mine,
I’m gonna do
what I gotta do. Take care of him.
You know, raise him to be a better man,
you know. Make sure he has
all the things I ain’t
have, you know. Just do what I gotta do.
Be a father. JUDGE LAKE: All right. These results were prepared
by DNA Diagnostics
and they read as follows. “In the case ofShomo
v. Cleckler/Freeman,
“pertaining to whether
Mr. Cleckler
or Mr. Freeman “is the father
of 11-month-old Theseus, “it has been determined “that the biological
father is…” “In the case ofShomo
v. Cleckler/Freeman,
“pertaining to whether
Mr. Cleckler
or Mr. Freeman “is the father of
11-month-old Theseus, “it has been determined “that the biological
father is “Mr. “Freeman.” (AUDIENCE MURMURING) Yes. Congratulations, ya’ll. FREEMAN: I sure appreciate it. I’ll do what I got to do.
That’s all I got to say. SHOMO: Thank you. I’m really relieved because my son needs
a father in his life. And he deserves that. He deserves it.
He really does. How do you feel,
Mr. Freeman? FREEMAN: I feel good
about it, you know. I’m gonna do
what I got to do,
like I said. Take care of him.
Raise him. And he’s counting on you. Yes, ma’am. JUDGE LAKE: You all have
a lot of talking and a lot
of discussing to do. To figure out
what’s best for him. Because ultimately that’s
what this court is about. Mr. Cleckler,
how are you feeling? Are you relieved?
Are you glad
you know the truth? I’m a little sad.
I’m not gonna lie. I’m just glad everybody
knows the truth. JUDGE LAKE: Good. Well,
I’m glad that you all
know the truth. The most important thing
is that Theseus has his daddy. Yes. And we want you
to be there for him. Yes, ma’am. Yes. All right? The court’s going to provide
some resources to you all
to help you sort through this and process this all,
but I hope you are better having
found out the truth. SHOMO: Yes, Your Honor. Good luck to everyone. FREEMAN: Thank you,
Your Honor. Court is adjourned. (APPLAUSE) I’m a little relieved
that everybody knows
the truth. (SIGHS) I’m just
a happy father, you know? He looks like me.
You know. He got his daddy. This is what
I want my son
to have right here. That’s all.
Just love. Just love from Daddy. That’s it.


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