Please be seated. -Hello, Your Honor.
-Hello. This is the case of
Yancy v. Thomas.Thank you, Jerome.
Good day, everyone. [audience] Good day. Miss Yancy, you are here
to save your family by proving to your boyfriend
that he fathered your
seven-month-old son, Kaharie. You testified that
his paternity denial
is tearing you apart. -Is that correct?
-Yes, Your Honor. Mr. Thomas, you claim
that after finding pictures
of Miss Yancy and the baby with another man, you are convinced you are not
Kaharie’s biological father. -Is that correct?
-That’s correct, Your Honor. So, Miss Yancy, tell us
why this court date
is so important. Well, it’s important
because, um… Well, we’ve been having
a few issues ever since
my baby was born. Um… It would go… You know, he was there
through the entire pregnancy,
and, um, we would go back and forth after the baby was born,
about, you know,the baby doesn’t look like him.
The baby looks like me.
Or you know, the baby–So you feel like,
this paternity -resolution…
-Mmm-hmm. …is important in terms
of saving your relationship. Um, yes, Your Honor. So, your relationship’s
on the line, Mr. Thomas? A lot going on right now
because of these
paternity doubts? Yes, Your Honor, it is. What do you mean? Do you feel
like you don’t know if you’re
gonna stay or you’re gonna go? Where are you at with this? Um, right now,
Your Honor, it’s… It’s hard, you know,
’cause I do love her and all. And throughout
the whole relationship, we always talked
about having a child together. But, you know, now it’s like,
we are at a point where… There’s a child, but I
possibly might not
be the father, you know. So, it…
It kind of hurts. So… And Kaharie
is seven months old. And you’re worried about
is it your baby? Yes, Your Honor. So, Miss Yancy, talk to me about
the nature of your relationship
with Mr. Thomas during the period of time
right before you got pregnant. We were just
getting back together.
We were still, um… -There was a little
brief break up?
-Yes. Okay. He was seeing somebody. And then, I started seeing
somebody, but, basically, it… That all transpired from, um, us just not being, pretty much,
truthful with each other, and, um… Yeah, and even…
Like she said, even at the time
we were both seeing someone, we were still
seeing each other. -So, it wasn’t like…
-[audience hooting] Well…
[chuckles] Were you broken up
or were you together? More like friends
with benefits. -[audience] Oh.
-Yeah. Well… But were you also dating
and sleeping with other people? [woman in audience] Yes. I didn’t start dating
and sleeping with other people until Maurice had seen me giving my friend a ride.
We were going out. He seen me
at the gas station with him. And all this, uh,
stuff came out. He started cussing me out
and texting me and calling me out my name. -Well, yeah, I mean–
-He would follow me in my car. -If you are in a relationship
-We weren’t in a relationship. …you don’t go and give
another man a ride– But I thought y’all said
y’all were broken up. -Exactly. When we
were breaking up…
-That’s not correct. To me, I felt like
we were over. -If we were over–
-And I told him that
multiple times. -If we were so over–
-“We’re done. Don’t call me. “Don’t come to my house.
Do not disturb me.
Leave me alone.” But at the same time,
she was still calling me, she would still come
to my mom’s house,
ask me for little things. You know what I mean,
to help her out with this
or that, and I would. So, if we were so broken up, there’s no need for you
to come ask me.
Go ask your new friend. -If you’re messing
-And that’s fine. And that’s fine,
so why would it… Why would you take it
upon yourself to follow me
in my car, to… -And that’s the thing, she–
-I’m talking to my new friend. -Why are you following?
-She said… She said I was
following, but at that time, where we live at,
it’s the weekend, so everyone goes
to the gas station, they hang out
and then they go to the clubs. -That’s all we were doing.
-What? -[Yancy laughing]
-Is that what we’re doing now? That sound like high school. Y’all a little too old to be
hanging out at the gas station. -[audience applauding]
-That’s like what you do after
the high school football game. Go over to the gas station
and to the fast food
restaurant… You all too old for this -in more ways than one.
-[Yancy] Right. So, Mr. Thomas, take me
to the time you found out
Miss Yancy was pregnant. When did you find that out? Um, we were sitting
at my mom’s house.And, you know, she came,
and she saidthat she took a pregnancy test
and she’s pregnant.And I’m like…
you know, I was happy
for the simple fact that over the years, we were trying
to conceive and have a baby. [mumbling] In the back
of my mind, I’m thinking like, “Yes, it finally happened”
and then, after she told me… She left and text me that the baby
might not me mine. -[audience gasps]
-[Yancy] That’s correct. Oh! And, uh, I told him… And once I started
thinking about the conception date
and the day I conceived, we were on a break-up. And I was seeing someone else. And so was he. But it’s like, you were already
seeing someone before the
break-up, if that’s the case. No… If that’s the case,
then it was the same with you. Unfortunately, we’ve got to
focus on your sexual practices
during the time, Miss Yancy, because we have
a paternity questionconcerning Kaharie,
which is your baby.[Yancy]Right.See, when you get
in this loosey-goosey phase,
nothing good comes of it. -[Yancy] Right.
-There’s no boundaries. You all still having sex
with each other,
presumably unprotected. And then, you still out there
having sex with
other people too. All that matters.
It makes a mess that you have to then
figure out how to clean up. And we all got the tools
to mess up. But then, we act like
we don’t have the materials
to clean up. Right. Yes. That’s what this courtroom is.
We the clean-up court. That’s what we do…
No, really. We clean up messes here. So that Kaharie
doesn’t have to live in it. Was Mr. Thomas supportive when
you were pregnant with Kaharie?
Was he there for you? -Yes, Your Honor, absolutely.
-He… -The whole way?
-The whole way. Even though you sent
that text back and said,
“It might not be your child”? [Yancy]Yes, I explained
to him that,you know, I was skeptical–And even though…
Even though she was skeptical, you know, she told me, and
I had my doubts, but at
the same time, it was like… The 50% chance it is mine,
I don’t want to have a son,
you know what I mean,born in this world
without being there for him.So, regardless, I stepped up.-And, you know, I chose
to be there for him.
-[Yancy]Right. As you should.-[Judge Lake]You made
-[Thomas]Yes.Regardless, I made
the choice to be there.You know what I mean?
And helped out
with everything– And throughout the pregnancy,
you were there? -Correct.
-Doctor’s appointments. You went there
when Kaharie was born?
You were at the hospital? That’s correct. So, when you see the baby,newborn beautiful baby,
what were you thinking?[Thomas]The first thing
I was thinking…I was overcome with,
uh, emotions. You know what I mean?
I’m like… You know. It’s about time I see him
and it’s like,he’s a handsome young man,but I just don’t feel
like he’s mine.[Judge Lake]Why?
Who did he look like?[Thomas] He looks
like his mother. [audience laughing] So, what’s wrong with that?
I mean, it’s a new baby. -[Thomas] Yeah, yeah.
-She’s the mother. Yeah, it’s true.
But you know, this thing
I used to say, like, if it looks like
the mother too much, then, it might not be the…
It might not be
the father or something. -Oh, boo.
-[Thomas chuckles] [laughs] Wait. Now, did you
make this up?
Or this is something you heard? [all laughing] No, it’s just something
I came up with myself,
Your Honor. -Okay, you came up
with this yourself.
-Yeah, yeah. [laughter] So, did you sign
the birth certificate even though the baby
looked like Miss Yancy? -Yes, I did.
-Okay, so what you
talking about then? Just being in the hospital,
watching the baby born,
being in the whole pregnancy, just being in the moment,
you know what I mean? Nobody wants
to go through all that and not believe
that they are not
the father, you know? So, of course, I signed it. Just emotions that
overwhelmed with love
for him and her, and just… -Just being there at the time.
-All right, I’ll accept that. ‘Cause even though
that’s the wrong thing to do,
that’s honest what you said. -You got caught up
in the emotion of it.
-[Thomas] Yeah. You loved her,
you loved the baby’cause you thought it could
potentially be your baby.And then… Yeah, and then,
I also have a son of my own. Um, and he, uh, he had,
like an extra little
pinky finger and Kaharie also had that
when he was born. So that, sort of, eased out
all the doubts I had,
you know what I mean? Oh, so you had a son
who was born
with the sixth finger. [Thomas] Yes. And so, when Kaharie
was born with it– I noticed the same thing.
So, that just took all the little doubts
or whatnot I had, and… Okay, and you felt like,
you know what… -I felt like he’s mine. Yes.
-…this is my baby. -And I’mma sign
this birth certificate.
-That’s correct. When did you
start doubting again? Um, we had took a trip to,
uh, Fresno to go visit family. And I end up going
through her phone and I notice that she has pictures
with Kaharie and the other man that could
possibly be the father. -[audience gasps]
-Oh, really? Yes. Why were you taking
pictures with the other guy,
Miss Yancy? [Yancy]My mom looked at him
and she told me straight up,“I don’t think
that that’s Maurice’s son,and I think that you should
get in contact
with his biological father.” And that’s cool and all,
but at the same time, if we were together,
why couldn’t you have
just told me? Why hide it
and make it a big deal?
You know what I mean? I wasn’t trying to hide it. I just felt like there was
a particular time
and place for that… But you realize
by not telling him, that just fueled
his doubt even more. [Yancy] Right. Right.
And I understand that. I can understand
where he’s coming from
on that aspect. And so, like I said,
I never meant for it
to go that way. But my intentions
was to explain to him
and tell him. But after… After how long? ‘Cause we were back for like,
like I said, four or five days. And then we had
an eight-hour ride together. And then… I mean, you could
have talked to me in the car,
anytime in between. -How long ago did you take
the family trip to Fresno?
-[Thomas] About two months. -Oh, it’s just two months ago?
-Yes. What has it been like
for the last two months? I mean, it’s been kind of hard
because, you know, I’ve grown
to love him.We’ve got a bond together.And you know what I mean?
After seeing that picture,
it was like,if you feel like this,
then why should I continue
to be around?If you are trying to put him,
or put another man in his life that hasn’t been there
or doesn’t want to be there? -Oh, the other man doesn’t–
-He doesn’t know that.
And that’s not true. I’m just saying, like,
I’m the only one
that’s been there, and… -[stammers]
-He doesn’t want to give
the other man an opportunity. [Thomas] I’ll give him
the opportunity– -Does the other man
want to be in Kaharie’s life?
-Yes, he does. -He does?
-And if he does
and if it’s not mine, then he can…
I’ll step away and he can… And, and that’s what he feels. He’s gonna step down
to let the other man -take care of his child.
-Yeah, it’s his child. Which is ridiculous
because we have a whole family. We’re in a relationship.
We have a house, we have a car.
We have everything intertwined. Yeah, we’re in a relationship.
And we were in a relationship
when we took that family trip. But in your eyes,
you didn’t, you didn’t come
and tell me as a family. So… [Judge Lake] Well? Let the church say “amen.” [audience] Amen. [audience applauding] -Miss Yancy.
-[Yancy clears throat] I have to agree
with Mr. Thomas’ logic. I think you should have
informed him in advance. He wouldn’t have…
He wouldn’t have went
for it at all. So, you felt like
he would have just said no. He either would have said no. Or he would have given up
on us and said,
“Do what you’re gonna do.” She still having communications
with this guy
and without me knowing. [audience gasps] I’m not really having
communications… You’re not really
but then again… Only if it’s important, I send him pictures
of the baby. What’s important, Your Honor?
If he’s not around, how is it
important to him? -He’s not there every night–
-So, you send him pictures
of Kaharie? Every now and again. And, and that’s something
I just found out right now.
I never knew that. Yeah, just like I found out
just recently when we took
the trip to Fresno that he was actually born
with extra fingers
on both sides of his hands. -So, that…
-Who was? The other potential dad. [audience gasps] Now, that is
an incredible coincidence. I didn’t know that either
until we took the trip and we were talking
about everything. So, what are your hopes,
What are you thinking? [stammers] What do you
want from this? Um, my hopes is for Maurice
to be the father of my child.
Those are my hopes. [Thomas]Yet she has
this other man that
she saying is the fatherand she still
sending him pictures. Why–And why are you crying,
What, what, what… I’m… I’m just emotional. It’s just annoying that he just feels like, “Oh, it’s so negative
on my end.
It’s all this negative.” He’s done stuff too. -He’s made our relationship…
-But what I’ve done… What I’ve done, didn’t bring
a child in our relationship. -It doesn’t matter.
It doesn’t matter.
-We’re not… We’re not… My mistakes, it didn’t
bring us here today. You didn’t bring a child. You’re right, you didn’t. But there were plenty
of ulterior motive that you had to get back at me
for stupid stuff. So, it’s okay.
Like I said,
at the end of the day, I’m just here to get them
DNA results so I can have
closure and move forward. -Whatever you’re gonna do,
-[audience applauding] If that’s what you wanna do,
that’s fine. What are you going to…
What are you
gonna do, Mr. Thomas? I mean, have you thought about
what you’re gonna do if you
are not the biological father? If I’m not
the biological father, then I’mma step away
and let her continue to put the other man in Kaharie’s life
so he could be his father. Like she wants. ‘Cause he wants to be
the father also, so… So, you’re saying,
if the baby’s not
your biological child, you’re done
with the whole relationship? -In a way, yes.
-He’s saying that… In a way? See now,
we’re back to loosey-goosey which didn’t get us anywhere
in the first place. Oh, yes, yes, ’cause I don’t
want to be sitting around just
being a stepdad while you’re…-While I’m raising a kid…
-[Yancy]That’s crazy.Because you’ve been a stepdad
for almost five years.And five years,
I’m tired of being a stepdad. You’re tired of being
a stepdad? Well, then,
you need to figure it out. This is…
It’s deeper than this. You need to figure
it out regardless. -I’mma say this, Miss Yancy.
-Mmm-hmm. Better him say this now than convince you
that everything is perfect only to every other day
bring up or every time your
child’s father had to come
pick him up, -it’d be an issue.
-[Yancy] Right. -So, now we know where we are.
-Mmm-hmm. Let’s find out
where we’re going. Jerome, I’m ready
for the results. [audience applauding] These results were prepared
by DNA Diagnostics and they read as follows. In the case of
Yancy v. Thomas…[audience groans] When it comes
Kaharie Thomas, it has been
determined by this Court, Mr. Thomas, you are not the father. [audience gasps] -I’m very sorry.
It’s okay, Your Honor. It’s all right, I mean… I still love her and I still
love him at the end of the day,
but if she wants… [audience applauding] If she wants to build
a father-son relationship with Kaharie and the other man, then I feel like
there is no need
for me to try to build a strong relationship with him. Well, that’s not true. No, see, listen. I support you in your truth,
but I’m not gonna let you
tell yourself a lie. It’s not that
you don’t have a place just because you’re not
the biological father. A child can’t have
too much love. And you’ve done
for this child. That you’ve ushered this child
in the world with love
and acceptance. Even when you weren’t sure.
That’s a good thing. That’s a blessing. So, now we’ve gotta figure out
how we manage
all of these circumstances that you both
brought into play. -Right?
-Correct. So, from here on out,
we gotta change that. I want you to go
talk to Dr. Jeff. I want you to take advantage
of the counseling and
the resources we have for you. Because Kaharie’s gonna
need you all to be able
to set some boundaries and know where you’re going
with this thing. Right? -That’s correct, Your Honor.
-All right. I wish you all
the very best. Court is adjourned.