Man Waits 18 Years to Find Out if He’s the Father (Full Episode) | Paternity Court


Please be seated. Hello, Your Honor. Hello. This is the case of
Johnson v. Carr/May.
Thank you Jerome.
Good day everyone. AUDIENCE: Good day. Mr. Johnson you say
the defendant, Mrs. Carr has been playing an
emotional DNA game with you over her daughter’s paternity
for the past 18 years. You’ve brought her to court
to finally end this game
and prove you are not her daughter’s
biological father. Is that correct? Yes, ma’am, Your Honor. Ms. Carr, you say that Mr. Johnson has
been dodging a DNA test and his responsibilities
as a father since the day you told
him you were pregnant. You claim the only
reason he is denying her is because you are
married and will no longer sleep with him,
is that correct? Yes, Your Honor. Mr. Johnson, what upsets
you the most about this? The lies. The up-and-down
roller coaster. One minute I’m not her father.
The next minute I am. It’s been a burden with
this paternity, you know. Ms. Carr, you say this is not
true, what he’s saying. Your Honor, Mr. Johnson
has always acknowledged my daughter
and he has alwaysattempted to be in her life.JOHNSON:Your Honor,that’s incorrect.When her daughter
was first born her father came
to my house, sat me down on my couch and
said that they had a DNA test with another man and I was not the father.
He was the father. Take me back to the nature
of this relationship. You all used to be
boyfriend and girlfriend? No, ma’am. My uncle
married her aunty… JUDGE LAKE: Okay. And they adopted her. I used to go over
to their house and help him out
like cutting grass and
things of that nature. And I would stay the night.
And they would allow us
to sleep in the same room. AUDIENCE:Oh!We had sex one time. JUDGE LAKE: Okay. One time. It was a lot of
touchy feely before, and the one time
we had sex it was, you know,
wham bam thank you, ma’am. Your Honor, that’s not true. Yeah. Well, do you agree
that you had sex with him
just one time? I agree that we had sex
on multiple times. We have had sex… And at some point you
realized you’re pregnant. Yes, ma’am. At the
time I was young. I was just coming on
my menstrual, so this was still new to me. So it was brought to
my attention that my
menstrual was late or it had not come on
when it was supposed to. So I was taken
to the doctor and later on determined
I was pregnant. I then called
Mr. Johnson and told Mr. Johnson
that I was pregnant. And Mr. Johnson’s
response was, “I’m going to
Dayton, Ohio.” Right. I was moving back
to Dayton, Ohio at this particular time. Uh, family members
were there. It was an emotional day.
She gave me a call,
“I’m pregnant. “Do you think
it’s yours?” Wait, do I
think it’s mine? Do you think it’s mine
is the question.
You know what I’m saying? We never had the
conversation about, “Do you think it’s
yours?” It was just, “I’m moving to Ohio.” Your Honor, I remember
this conversation verbatim. You hear me? This is something
I cannot forget. I remember the whole day
like it was yesterday. Crying and snotting. I told my family member
after I got off the phone
with Ms. Carr, “I could have
a baby on the way.” Your Honor, nobody else
in the family knew about
him being a possibility until I had her on
the delivery table. That’s when I told my mom. JUDGE LAKE:And then
once you had the baby
what did you do?
Did you call him back and…MS. CARR:I did not call him.I did not pursue him.I had a boyfriend
at the time. And Mr. Johnson
was aware… So they thought the boyfriend was… …of my boyfriend. …the father of the child. The whole time. JUDGE LAKE: All right. They came to my house and told me they got a
DNA test with somebody else so I moved on with my life.
What else am I supposed to do? The head of your
household comes to me and tell me that… That’s not true. You know what I’m saying?
“I got a DNA test.”
What am I… Okay, okay, let me
understand this. At that
time you had a boyfriend? I did tell him.
I pursued it with him and it went nowhere. JUDGE LAKE: When you say
you pursued it with him,
what do you mean? When you pursued it with the
other guy, what did that mean? Yeah, what does that
mean specifically? She told him
he was the father. That’s why they came to
my house two years later and told me they
had a DNA test with another guy. There was no DNA test. There was never a DNA test. When you found out that you were pregnant,
you told Mr. Johnson and
you told the boyfriend. Yes, ma’am. I left that
part out. I apologize. JUDGE LAKE: Okay.
Now this is coming together. So you got the boyfriend
and you told both. I told both. Mr. Johnson said,
“I’m moving away.” So at that point when the
baby was born you still
had your boyfriend, right? There was no one
involved, no one. No one’s name went on
her birth certificate. So why would you get excluded from
the equation? No one was involved. And you never did a DNA
test with the ex-boyfriend? We had a DNA test within
the last three years. JOHNSON: Wow. Me and the other father. And you did not know
this, Mr. Johnson? No, ma’am, I didn’t. Mr. Johnson has been active
in her life periodically. At one point of time after her father came to my
house and said that I wasn’t the father,
I move on with my life. Maybe about five,
six years later,I had my first daughter.They see how I’m, uh,
interacting with her and so I guess they say,
“This is your daughter now.” No, this is not true. JOHNSON: Let me tell you.
I’ve seen the daughter in a grocery store.
She runs up to me. She ran up to me. Like, “Daddy.”
Uh, I’m, I’m shocked at the
moment, like, “What?
Wait a minute. Daddy?” When I tell you, I’m looking
for cameras to pop out. I thought I was on a
prank show or something, like… How old is she? She’s about five or
six at this time. Your Honor, this is my first
time ever hearing this
story about the grocery store. JUDGE LAKE: Okay,
so let’s hear it. She run up to me like,
“Daddy.” You know
what I’m saying? And I’m like, “Oh, wait
a minute. Okay. “Uh, hey.” I wanna say,
“I’m not your daddy.” But I can’t tell this
little girl this, you
know what I’m saying? I recognized the
family members so I just assumed this
was Ms. May, but… That it was her. I’m confused as to why
she’s calling me Daddy. So I’m asking
for a DNA test. Like, “No, you can’t
just say that “she’s my daughter without
me getting a DNA test.” So what happened when
you requested the DNA test after the run-in at the
grocery store, Mr. Johnson? It never happened.
So about three to four years
later, I move in with a family member
that they are close to. And, uh, Ms. May is constantly interacting
with these family members. So she comes to the
family member’s house and like, “Your daughter
is coming.” Like, this
is not my daughter. I, I… Your Honor, that is not true. Can I finish my story?
I said I need a DNA test. And all the family, like,
“No, she’s yours. You don’t
need to get a DNA test. “She look like another
family member when
she was younger “and…” So I’m just
full of emotion and so against my
better judgment, even without the DNA test, I started accepting
Ms. May as my child. I know that I need to
get this DNA test based on what they
told me in the past. I’m a full-blown father now. Birthday parties.
Clothes, school clothes. Your Honor, I donated… I donated a plasma to have
Ms. May a Hannah Montana
birthday party. How old was Amber
at this point? It was her ninth birthday,
her tenth birthday.I’m a full-blown father.MS. CARR:Your Honor,he never communicated
to me about this.
I’m a full-blown father,everything. So uh… So if you’re a
full-blown father and you throwing
birthday parties, what brings you
to court today?
You still have doubt? I got a phone call about
a year or two later requesting a DNA test. That’s not true,
Your Honor. Now, after I’ve done…
I’m a full-blown father. Why get a DNA test now?
Why not when I asked for one? I want the answers to
both of those questions. Number one. I want
the answer to why after all that time
he’s doing birthdays? He’s showing up,
he’s a daddy. Why, why the DNA… MS. CARR: He’s not
communicating with me. Again, he’s not
communicating with me, and I always find out about
things after the fact. And so you didn’t have
any idea all this time that Mr. Johnson had
been stepping up and
trying to be a father to your daughter? MR. CARR: And that is false. That point of time
I stepped up. She had a… He did one
birthday party, one. How old was she? Facts. One. This is a fact.
Yes, one birthday. And who are you? Okay. I don’t even…
I’ve never seen this
man a day in my life. You know what I’m saying?
Who are you? You know, there has been
a lot of talk about Amber. And I personally
am ready to meet her because I want to
ask her myself… JOHNSON: Yeah, yeah. …what is going on. Jerome. (APPLAUSE) Will you please escort
Ms. May into the courtroom? Yes. Hi, Amber. Hello, Your Honor. What memories do you
have of Mr. Johnson
being in your life? Memories with Mr. Johnson. Um, my tenth birthday he threw me a party
at the water park. I remember that.
And then there was the time from summer at
the fifth grade. I remember that day
because he made me
stay in the house while all my cousins
playing outside. There was a lot of boys out
there. She was the only girl. (LAUGHTER) I was not.
I was not. And so when’s the last time
you saw Mr. Johnson? Last time I saw
Mr. Johnson was the fifth grade summer. Was probably around… Hmm. …2010. So you have not seen her
or laid eyes on her? No, ma’am, she’s extremely
beautiful… (VOICE BREAKS) (CLEARS THROAT) JUDGE LAKE: Yes. (APPLAUSE) JUDGE LAKE: Ms. May,
what was your understanding as it related to
your paternity? What were you told? I was told by
family members that he was my father
and they would show me
pictures of him and they were like,
“Oh, you look just like him.”And so I was like,
“Okay, that’s my dad.”
And growing up my mother had told me that
he was a part of my life and so I don’t have that
many memories with him. Like, there was this time
I called him on the phone, I asked for
a birthday present. He gave me a false
tracking number and we was all
waiting for it, I was like so excited
to get the present and it never came
so I just… I forgot
about it and… Did you give her a fake
tracking number, Mr. Johnson? JOHNSON: I may
have, Your Honor. At the time I probably had
got the phone call to take the DNA test
and I told Mrs. Carr that I’m not doing
anything else until we get proof that
this is my daughter. We never had that
conversation, Your Honor. We had a conversation when I
went through the court system and pursued him
for DNA testing
and child support. This is after, this is after I stepped… It was screwed up that I
did that, but this was while, this was during the same
time as the tracking number and the gift that he
had promised her. So when you requested
the DNA test, he never showed up? No, he did not. And so at that point
your desire to
pursue Mr. Johnson was to collect
child support? I just wanted a DNA
test once and for all so that I could
quit hearing, “I don’t know if
she’s mine” or you know, I didn’t wanna
hear that because one moment you’re her father.
The next moment you’re not. It gets really confusing. I mean, it is,
it is amazing to me how much you all were doing. You did everything
but get a DNA test. I mean, everything. (APPLAUSE) And now Amber is the one who’s hurting… JOHNSON: At the
end of the day. …thinking you’re her
biological father. And you only showed
up for a birthday party and, I mean, Amber
what was that like? Well, at there,
Mr. Johnson, like, left me, that’s when the man
I call my father,
Mr. Carr over there, that’s when he came and
stepped up and took his place. And so all these
years I was like,“Hmm, okay, so you know,“he doesn’t want to
spend time with me.”
And so I recently
got in contact with him and over social
media and asked, “Are you going to come to
my graduation or are you gonna
lie and say you’re coming “and then not show up?” JOHNSON: Yeah. I have copies
of text messages. Jerome, let me
see that, please. This is not the whole
conversation, but it’s just the part that really
stood it out. She said, “What, you don’t
want to talk to your first
born that you abandon?” AMBER: Because he
actually contacted my mother.He has told me to tell
my mother to call him.
And so you said,
“I did abandon you.“I take responsibility
for my actions.
“But it’s a lot
you don’t know.”
And then Amber writes back,
“Well, I’m of age, please
enlighten me, Brandin.”And then you say, “You
may not be my daughter.
“We were supposed
to get a paternity test
“about four or five years ago“but your mom never
went through with it.”
JOHNSON:Correct.And when you reached out,
all you wanted was your biological father
and the man you know to be your father figure
in your life. You wanted them to be
at your graduation. Yes, ma’am. And Mr. Johnson, if you are her
biological father, would you like to
go to her graduation? JOHNSON: Gladly.
I would love to. It’s hard on her.
You know I’m saying? She’s the number one
being hurt out of this. You know I’m saying? But I
got feelings and emotions
tied up in this as well. I have missed
out on a lot. They deprived me of
the chance of her… MS. CARR: That’s not true. …falling in love with
me for the first time. They deprived me of
seeing her first steps. That’s not true, Your Honor. They deprived me of
her first birthday. Father-daughter dances.
They deprived me of
a lot of stuff, too. Your Honor… You have an opportunity
to tell him. I felt like you could’ve
gotten in contact with her. You could have.
But you didn’t try. And so that doesn’t
make me feel like you
want to be with me. Look, it’s, it’s
over with now. It don’t have to be over with
if you’re my daughter. It’s over with now. You know what I’m saying?
We can be over from now for… You know, we
can’t ever get back the past. It don’t have to be over
if you’re my daughter, Amber. (APPLAUSE) We’re here to get you the
answers, Amber, you deserve and you need and we have
those answers for you. Jerome. These results were prepared
by DNA Diagnostics and
they read as follows. In the case of
Johnson v. Carr/May…
JUDGE LAKE: When it
comes to Amber May, it has been determined
by this court, Mr. Johnson, you… …are her father. (APPLAUSE) MR. CARR: I knew that.
All the time. May I go hug
my parents? Absolutely, honey. Okay. It’s okay, honey. It’s okay. (APPLAUSE) JUDGE LAKE: We
came here for a beautiful young woman who deserves to know
who her biological father is. And now we have that answer. Yes, we do. And I am so thankful
that you have Mr. Carr in your life
and I am so happy that your mother has
been there for you. Every girl needs
her daddy. And you’ve been
blessed with two. (APPLAUSE) You have two men
who love you very much. And that’s a
beautiful thing. Mr. Johnson. I just want to apologize
to Amber first. I, I… I’m extremely sorry. I love you.
I will be here for you from now on. (SOBBING) (APPLAUSE) I have counseling and
resources for all of you ’cause I want you to figure
out how to take the next step. And it won’t be easy
but it’s gonna be worth it. Yes, it will be. JUDGE LAKE: Yes. MR. CARR: Yes, it will. JUDGE LAKE: And I wish you
all the very best of luck. JOHNSON: Thank you, Judge. Court is adjourned.

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