Twins Believe Man Who Raised Them Is Father, Now There’s Tension (Full Episode) | Paternity Court

You may be seated. Hello, Your Honor.
This is a case of
Eggleston vs. Eggleston.
Thank you, Jerome. Good day, everyone. EGGLESTONS: Good day. JUDGE LAKE: Miss Eggleston, you and your
identical twin sister state that the man
who raised you
recently shocked you when he announced
that he is not your biological father. You’ve petitioned the court
for a paternity test
because you believe finances are motivating
your alleged father’s claims. Mr. Eggleston, your
statement to the court counters that you
know for sure that the plaintiff’s father
is a white man and you are not their biological dad. Now, Ms. Eggleston, how did you and your
sister learn this news? Okay, well, it all started
about a year ago
at his birthday party… JUDGE LAKE: Mmm-hmm. …and we overheard
him speaking to some of our
family members saying that, “Y’all know
these are not my kids.” That’s what he was saying.
We heard him.
Now we was listening. Telling to our family
members, “You know
they’re not my kids.” “I’m down here raising “all these sins and nobody
is helping.” That’s what he was
explaining to the rest
of our family members. But our family members
didn’t say anything back. Yeah. Nobody said anything,
it was just dropped. It was just dropped. I’m thinking he’s just
speaking under the influence
of alcohol. Exactly. Let me ask you
this, ladies. Before
the birthday party, before this happened,
in your whole lives, there had never been any other mention, the subject never
came up that this man potentially was not
your biological father? No, no, no. No. None whatsoever.
We grew up as babies as him being our father. He’ll come visit us.
He would take us out. He’s on our
birth certificate. Yeah. He’s our dad. JUDGE LAKE:
All right, Mr. Eggleston,
I need to hear from you. Why is it that you
believe you’re not their father when sounds like to me
you’ve raised them
as your own? Yes I did.
Knowing from the start that I knew they
wasn’t mine. But, you know, something
overcame me that day… Let me get to the part… You knew their mother. Yes, I did. JUDGE LAKE: So how did
that happen? Well, I was… I was
coming home one day
and, um, she was in the backyard
barbequing and I’d noticed this
big beautiful smile. JUDGE LAKE: Uh-huh. And big… Big breasts. Noticed those, huh? RODNEY: Yeah. And the big cheeseburgers
on the grill. (AUDIENCE LAUGHS) Okay. We made a date,
you know, and eventually we
got together and, um, next thing you know, um, I’m living in her
mama’s basement, and not too soon
after that, she’s on the phone
calling some guy out and telling him
to send money. You know, “I’m pregnant,”
and she’s looking at me, (AUDIENCE GASPS) going like this. Shh! RODNEY: You know and… When she said,
“I’m pregnant.” RODNEY: Mmm-hmm. Do you immediately think these may not be mine
or do you say these are my children? I said it to myself,
I knew I didn’t want to say it to her, but I…
I knew it all along. And why did you
doubt specifically? I don’t know, I’m… That’s probably my thought
frame back then because, you know,
maybe if I get
in this relationship, it’ll make my life better.
It’ll turn me around,
you know… Okay, so let’s
move forward… RODNEY: Yes. …to the birth of these two beautiful
young ladies. Yeah. You were there for the birth? I was right there
beside her. So you were
in the delivery room? Yeah. With my little mask on
and doctor suit on. (AUDIENCE LAUGHS) Why, why, doubt? When I see them
coming out, they was glowing. JUDGE LAKE: They were glowing? Yeah, yeah. (AUDIENCE LAUGHS) Look how pale
they was, and plus, the gook on their body,
you know they was shining. JUDGE LAKE:
So when they were born,
you say they were glowing because they
were very pale. RODNEY: Yes, yes. And uh, you know, I… I didn’t have intentions
on signing it,
but, you know, I had the spirit
come over me. You know, the little
devil and the angel. Oh! You got… You got
both of those? (AUDIENCE LAUGHS) Yeah. JUDGE LAKE: Okay. RODNEY: The devil said,
“You know they’re not
your kids. Don’t sign it.” Then the angel said, “They’re gonna need you,
don’t turn your back on them.” So what’s your point
of saying you’re not? So, why’d you sign
the birth certificate? Because, you know, now I’m getting
the smiles, I’m getting this, you know, tension… It doesn’t matter
if you promise our mom… I’d never speak
to you again? I hate you, I’m
the sorriest dad around? BOTH:
‘Cause you wasn’t doin’
what you were supposed to do. RODNEY: Give you
allowance? BOTH: It’s not about
allowance. What school clothes
did you buy? How did you take
care of us? (BOTH CHATTERING) I’m a single parent. You know, I’m a single
parent. I’m a single parent. Okay, Mr. Eggleston,
how do you respond to their claims
that their childhood was less
than stellar because you were negligent? I was never able to buy
two pair of Nikes, two cell phones, two this,
two this, you know… You didn’t
buy anything. Okay, okay, so…
So now I get punished. I get punished because
I’m not money worthy to keep them happy.
To keep them happy. It’s not about
the money. RODNEY: It’s all about
money now. It’s all about
money now. It’s not about the money. If I cherished them
with money, it’d be a whole
new different ballgame. You never took
care of us. JUDGE LAKE: So, let me
ask you this, ladies. I’m hearing… RODNEY: I’m cooking them
dinner every day. I’m making sure
they come home,
do their homework, but that’s not good enough. We didn’t have
no structure. No structure at all. I’m a single man, you know,
I’m a single man, you know. I got this
responsibility now. No job, not going
to work. His friends over
every day. Every day drinking. We ran
it ourselves. Our basketball coach
bought school supplies. Exactly. JUDGE LAKE: Let me ask
you this, ladies. Ladies, ladies, let me say this.
Let me say this to you. I know this is emotional. I know it is.
For both of you. It just sucks,
you know, because my mom, she’s gone. So even if whatever
the DNA says so, we don’t even have
her side. You know… When did you lose
your mom? ANTONEA: We was eight. RODNEA: We was nine. When we were eight
years old, in front of us. You know what I’m saying,
it happened in front of us.
Nobody never asked how we were doing,
you know, he, um… He took us to Columbus,
you know, away from our family,
away from everything we knew. So when your mom
passed away, he did take you in? Yeah, he took us. A year later. A year later. He took… RODNEA: And before we left,
my mom’s mom told us he didn’t want us
till he found out he was gonna be
getting $900 a month. (AUDIENCE GASPS) That is not true.
Not true. RODNEA: My grandma Ida, she was saying that
he was not hollerin’ about taking
you all to Columbus until he found out money
was involved. JUDGE LAKE: So he packed you off and moved you
to Columbus. RODNEY: That is not true. She said, “Be aware.” That is not true.
That is not true. We have no reason
to lie. We don’t want none of this. JUDGE LAKE: Okay. And so he takes you, and you move to Columbus. RODNEA: We go to Columbus. And how was your
childhood there? Tell me about that. Me and him never
got along. Like, me and him fought
all the time. ‘Cause we kids,
what we say don’t matter. How we felt don’t matter,
but it do. I have something first
to tell you that it’s things
I should have did different. Why? Why now
do you lean over
this podium and say, “I’m not your daddy,
but I am your daddy.” Because I’m fussed at
and cussed at. And I never, I… JUDGE LAKE: You feel like
they’re disrespecting you. Yeah. “I’ll never speak
to you again. “You the sorriest dad
in the world.” I’ve been in their life
for 18 years, three months
and 16 days. All right, all right! Exactly. So what’s the point of us
being here? 18 years, three months
and 3 days. What more else
I got to prove? What else I got to prove? JUDGE LAKE: Let me
have some order ’cause I’ve got to get
to an important point. JUDGE LAKE: Mr. Eggleston,
let me get something straight. You say that you know
you not the father and you know that a white man
is their father. Tell the court
how you know this. When we returned
to the doctor, she’d got marks on her back
and the doctor questioned,
you know. She had some marks
on her back. Yeah, some skin disease. A rare skin? Yeah, and they
questioned… Which I can clarify. First day she come out,
the doctor said, “Daddy, you sure you
ain’t got the wrong babies?” You know. “You didn’t
get the wrong babies?” I said, “Okay, here
we go again.” You know… So, I, you know… I’m not the biological
dad, okay. So the doctor told you… ANTONEA: Basically, I had this skin condition
on my back, which is calledtinea versicolor.Mmm-hmm. And they’re saying
this is what I got, and it’s only seen
in Caucasians. But I had to say, “Forget what they say
and I’m gonna just
figure it out on my own.” And I found out
that the skin treatment is not just for
Caucasians. JUDGE LAKE: Did you
bring that report? Jerome, will you hand
me that package? So, in your mind,
without expressing to them, your doubts are
getting validated. Is that what
I’m understanding? RODNEY: They were validated from day one because
when I met her mother, it’s on her birthday. When is your
mother’s birthday? BOTH: August 4th. Add nine months to that. You give it to the court. Seven months. JUDGE LAKE: Okay. So, the babies were
born seven months after you met
their mother. Okay, let me bring your
witness up, ladies. Uh, please approach
the podium. Please state
your name. My name is Deshonna. JUDGE LAKE: Hello. Miss? Hi. Deshonna. Ms. Johnson. Johnson. I’m sorry. Let me first ask you
what your relationship
is to… These are my
second cousins. Their mother is my
first cousin. Okay. Okay, she was 10 years
older than me, but I was 10 and you kind of
look up to them, you know. The make-up,
all that kind of stuff. You’re like sisters. You were like sisters. And I’m a only child. So that’s how it was. But he’s talking
about a… A white man
that actually… I don’t know
how to word it,
but I wanna say he was like her john. He didn’t care
if she was pregnant. He would have sent her money,
just because he… That’s what they do.
That’s what they do. That was his purpose
of being there. And she didn’t just call once. He sent money often. Before she got pregnant,
he was sending money. JUDGE LAKE: So, what
you’re saying is, their mom did have
a relationship with
a white man… JOHNSON: Yes… …that she knew and she
had a relationship with. Yeah. Now, Mr. Eggleston,
do you know who this man Ms. Johnson is
referring to is? As far as I’m concerned,
it was her sugar daddy. Mr. Eggleston, did anybody, anybody ever tell you,
specifically that these young girls
are not your children because
a white man is their father? RODNEY: No. No. I just put two
and two together. Like I said, all I can
remember is… So this is you speculating
based upon… Phone calls. Yeah, yeah. Okay. Now, the only person
that could even say anything that could
give us any doubt that
he’s not the father was a friend of my mom. Okay. She said that my mom
told her directly that he was
not the father. When you had information
from the family friend,
did you share it with your dad? No. So let me get a little
further into these issues. Mr. Eggleston, your mother, she was unable
to make it to court today. So she sent a video
statement in. I’d like to play
that statement, please.Rodney say he’s
not the father?
After 18 years?He should have said this
from the very beginning,
when Sophia died.That’s what he should
have said when the twins
were born.
He should have said
they weren’t his.
But he didn’t.And I don’t want Rodney
to tell me ever again
(SOBBING)that he’s not the father.(AUDIENCE CLAPPING) And that’s true. That’s true. Ladies. And that’s his own mom. That’s what we
go through every day. JUDGE LAKE: Let them speak. That’s his own mom,
our own grandmother. You know, he brought this
to our attention off of something
that he thought. When we was little
babies, if you thought
that we wasn’t yours, then that’s when
you take us somewhere. You get that done and you
keep that to yourself. This is our only
family that we got. They didn’t have to know. Ladies, first of all I need
to say that your mother
is a beautiful lady. And I know
regardless of what
has happened, she is proud of you all, for seeking out
your own truth and for wanting to understand
and being brave enough to ask the questions (SOBBING) and find the answers
to things that some people
don’t have… Don’t have
the strength to do. RODNEA: We found a journal
of his, and he don’t know
we read it. But we found the journal
and basically, I understand that this
is something he been
fighting with himself and it’s starting to hit him. So, then that
makes us figure. Okay, then now we understand
why you treated
us like we was… (OVERLAPPING CHATTER) What did it say,
specifically? In the journal, basically
a major part of the journal
was about us. And he labeled it
his secret. He was saying,
you know, details. Saying, “They came out
and I seen them.” He said, “I felt something
came over my body.” Saying, “I’m gonna be
in these kids’ lives. “They’re gonna
need me one day.” He said, “I had to step up
and be a father.” It’s like he was
talking to himself. Is this true, Mr. Eggleston? Yes. But I see now
I shouldn’t have did that. I should have
left up out of here. They hurt and stuff
and maybe I shouldn’t… But listen, listen to me. Is that what they want? You have to understand, you speak out
of frustration. But you’ve got
to understand that those words are daggers
in their heart. Exactly. You get frustrated
and you say something. But it affects
how they feel
about who they are. Yes, issues I have…
I took after my dad,
you know. Mouthy, you know. Lot of things,
I don’t think
before I talk. Before you speak. I got a bad habit of that. I think
at this point, we’re ready to learn
the results. RODNEY: Yes, ma’am. Now, whether the results
say he is your father
or he isn’t, this court wants
to understand what you want
going forward. You know, I’ve
always had that daddy’s little girl
mentality. Coming from our
part of it, I want him
to be the dad, you know, because
it didn’t matter
what he did, how I felt
or how she felt. I always knew
that I’m gonna be
daddy’s little girl. You know, I’m always
gonna cover for him. You know,
but at the same time… That’s the thing.
He has that over her. Yeah, he… I feel like,
if you my dad, you still should
have did better. If you’re not my dad, then you
should have kept… JUDGE LAKE: Mr. Eggleston,
I see you becoming emotional
right now. And this is
an opportunity for you to
not speak out of anger and for you to
speak from your heart, because I see
you’re very emotional.
What do you feel? I’m gonna always
love them, however I show it,
however I feel it,
you know. They’re a part of me. JUDGE LAKE: Well said. So, with that said, Jerome, please
pass me the results. Oh. (SIGHS) He better be
the daddy. When it comes to whether
Mr. Rodney Eggleston is the father of Antonea and
Rodnea Eggleston, Mr. Eggleston, you… When it comes to whether
Mr. Rodney Eggleston
is the father of Antonea and Rodnea
Eggleston… Mr. Eggleston, you are their father. JOHNSON: I told you!
I told you, I told you! I told you, you were
the daddy right there. I told you, I told you. I was there,
I was there. Not when you conceived,
but I was there. (SOBBING) We knew it! You know, all this time…
Look just like him.
Look at their head. So, basically, you know… It’s a waste of time. It’s something he made up
in his mind. Okay, I have to say
something to you guys. We all wish
we could rewind the past… Yes, ma’am. …and make
every wrong right. But we can’t. JOHNSON: I told you. JUDGE LAKE: We can’t do it. No, ma’am.
You’re absolutely right. But the beauty and
the blessing of it all
is that we have today. JOHNSON: All right.
Yes, ma’am. JUDGE LAKE: Right? And what I saw as soon
as that result came in… I didn’t see
a beat in hesitation and that man walked
from that podium straight over
to his daughters. JOHNSON: Yes, he did. Sometimes, the love is
in the little things. Sometimes, he might not get
the school nights right, he might not show up
to all the games. He might not be able
to get the book bag. He’s a human being (AUDIENCE APPLAUDING) that’s gotten it
very wrong. And sometimes,
people can only do better when they
know better. JOHNSON: Yes, ma’am,
yes, ma’am. I’m looking
at you, Mr. Eggleston. You probably…
Can we really keep it real? …weren’t the father
you hoped you were
going to be to the kids. But you were
making it up
as you go along. Right? Yeah. So, in some ways,
you do owe them
an apology. RODNEY: Of course I do. For a lot of
what happened when they were growing up. Exactly. Rodnea, I’m sorry. I’m sorry, you know. I could have been
a better dad. It’s a work in progress. RODNEY: But I’m
always here for you. I’m your daddy
for real now. (LAUGHING) I could have did things
different, you know. We’re going
to be all right. All right, yes, ma’am.
We’re going to be all right. You know, this is one
of these days where the court
really feels overjoyed. And yes,
we’ve got Daddy
and his little girls. I wish you guys
a beautiful, long,
happy life together. And I want you
to learn to love
each other. But also to
forgive each other. Court is adjourned. (APPLAUSE) JOHNSON: Thank you. You were making mistakes
for a long time. And it’s about time
you just be quiet and stop making mistakes. Basically, I feel that
you open things that just should have
remained closed. I’m gonna do better,
you know.
I’m here for you all. I’ll leave it
up to you all from now on, okay?
I love you all.


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