Man Believes Child Looks Like Neighbor and Not Him (Full Episode) | Paternity Court

Please be seated. Hello, Your Honor. Hello. This is the case of
Smethers v. Stevens.
Thank you, Jerome.
Good day everyone. AUDIENCE: Good day. Ms. Smethers,
you have dragged
the defendant to court because you are devastated that he refuses to accept that he is your son,
Adrian’s biological father. You claim today’s
DNA test results will have a dramatic impact
on your future as a family. JUDGE LAKE: Is that correct? Yes, Your Honor. Mr. Stevens, you say that one look at you
and the baby is all the proof
anyone needs to see that you are not the father. And if that’s not enough, you claim the plaintiff
slept with another man right before she told you she’s pregnant.
Is that correct? Yes, Your Honor. Ms. Smethers, what upsets
you most about the situation you find yourself
and your child in today? Well, Your Honor,
me and Mr. Stevens met when I was 16 years old. Uh, we went to GED
classes together. SMETHERS:We eventually
started dating,
I moved in with him
and we had our first daughter.After that, it went from
good to bad. Mr. Stevens started
cheating on me. I was always at home
with the baby. You know, he was always
out with girls. STEVENS: But, like, uh, I only
cheated on her because, like, for example,
like, I would go
through her phone and, like, she would have
messages erased and messages that
didn’t make sense. On her social medias
she would have, you know, like, you can just
type in a letter or you can
go to the recent search and it will tell you all who, you know, who
you searched up
on that phone and, like, so, I would see
her exes on there so, like,
I didn’t trust her. And so, this
happy relationship… It… It changed for…
It went from being happy to everybody having
trust issues. All right, what happens, I mean, you cheating wouldn’t
land you inPaternity Court.Necessarily, not with
this woman at least. He cheated on me for
the first five years
of our relationship. I didn’t. I was not…
I did not step out
of the relationship until right before our
son was conceived. She wants to say, like,
I cheated on her
for the five years, but, like, there’d be times
when I text her and ask her,
like, “Hey, where you at?” Well, she’s supposed
to be at home but, yet,
she’s in a different state. That’s a lie. She was
in a different state. She was not at home.
She was not at home. JUDGE LAKE: A different state? STEVENS: She was in Indiana. No, I was at home. No, I wasn’t. JUDGE LAKE: Take me
to the pregnancy. Ms. Smethers, you find out
you are pregnant and you tell
Mr. Stevens. Yes. JUDGE LAKE: What was
his response? He was happy. JUDGE LAKE: You were? Yeah. At first, yeah,
I was happy. And, like, and then
in the aspect is, like, you know, she was pregnant but she waited five months
to tell me that, there was a possibility that he wasn’t mine. JUDGE LAKE: But… Oh, so, initially when you
found out she was pregnant you didn’t have any issue. STEVENS: I was excited, like, ’cause you know, like,
I found out that it was a boy. So, like, you know,
it was my first boy. I was…
I was excited about that. You know, like, I wanted
the first child as a boy… That’s what my two daughters
were supposed to be. But, it ended up being, uh,
you know… Your two daughters
were supposed to be girls. I hate to break it to you. Well, like, you know… And there is nothing
wrong with that. I know. AUDIENCE: (APPLAUDING) And, so at five months, she pops up and tells you, “I cheated and this may
not be your child.” One of my family members,
uh… And a couple of our
mutual friends that
we had together, they ended up coming out
and telling me, uh, that she opened up to them
and told them that AJ might not be mine
and that she cheated on me. I did open up and say, that I was with another man. But, I never said that
AJ was not his. Even though you didn’t say it,
could it be true? Yeah. No. It was…
My conception date, was between October 7th
and the 11th, or the 12th. My birthday was the 11th. We had a hotel party and he was
conceived that night. I was with the other guy… But, this is the thing though,
she said like, yeah, like, we did it on her birthday but we had a little bit,
kind of did it
before her birthday. STEVENS: We had talked about
getting back togetherand we ended up meeting
somewhere and that was
the first time it happened.
And then about a week
and a half goes by
and then it was her birthday. So, Ms. Smethers,
you are saying you conceived on your birthday? Yes. Were you with Mr. Stevens
around that time
or only that time? No, we were together. We were together for…
It was… We had been back together
for about two or three months because the other guy that
I slept with was three months prior
to me getting pregnant. With her and the other guy,
it was more than one time. And then, on top of that
it was at my Mom’s house, in our bedroom. What? STEVENS: You know
what I’m saying. And at my parents’ house,
it was like a bed for them. I admit that
what I did was wrong. No, that is beyond wrong. STEVENS: My brother,
he ended up coming down from Ohio, so like,
I ended up venturing off to help
him try to get his life
back on track. And… And in the process of me
trying to help him do that, that happened on me. So, Ms. Smethers, how do you
end up with another guy? How do you end up
even, you knew
him already? I knew him already. Um, I basically just got
tired of Joshua’s cheating for the first five years
of our relationship. We took a little break.
I guess, you could call it. Um, and he had someone else
that he was messing with. So, I messed
with someone else, too. And so, you knew this person. You all started dating
or you just started
sleeping together? We were just sleeping. No, she was just
sleeping with him, apparently. Okay, so you say this
happened three months before? Mmm-hmm. You and Mr. Stevens
got back together. Yes. And that was also three months
before Adrian was conceived? Yup. But, you don’t believe that,
Mr. Stevens? Mmm-mmm. Not one bit. JUDGE LAKE: Why do you
believe this other man is Adrian’s biological father? Because I don’t see my side
of the feature in him. STEVENS:When it comes to it,
like, he is the lightest one.
Okay, but you know,
babies come in all
different skin colors. You cannot judge a baby
by what color they come out or even what color they are.
You can’t judge that. I know, that’s one
of his main points. That’s what I’m trying
to get through his head. Just because he has
lighter skin doesn’t mean
he’s not his. How many children do you have? Three. And Adrian is the baby? Yes, ma’am. When you look at Adrian you see the other guy. A little bit. Yes, ma’am. So, what is Mr. Stevens relationship like
with Adrian? He’s a good dad to him,
he, he takes him, you know, when he takes
the other two. He’s always acted like
a father-figure to him. He just…
He’s just had his doubts. Um, he always comes out
and says “He’s too white,
he can’t be my baby.” But, I mean, he still
stepped up and took
the father-role. You know, like, that would
be wrong for me though, like to have my two kids
and still be able
to doubt that he’s not mine
and treat him different. Like, that would be unfair
and like, you know, like, my stepdad,
he didn’t really have
to raise me, but he did. So, I don’t know, like,
no one should have their
back turned on them so. JUDGE LAKE:
So, you feel like… AUDIENCE: (APPLAUDING) Absolutely, Mr. Stevens,
that is commendable of you because we don’t
often see that
in this courtroom. We sometimes,
we see just the opposite. A potential father has doubts. He doesn’t want to get close
to a child. He doesn’t want
to form a bond. So, I appreciate that you
decided to step up
to the plate for Adrian. So, even though you are there
22 months, the past 22 months
you are there, you try to treat Adrian just
like the other children. Yes, ma’am. But, when you’re with him
are you constantly looking at him
and comparing features and does, are you having
constant reminders
that you don’t… STEVENS:A lot of the times,
but I try not to because
it messes with me.
That gives me more doubt
and like, I just
don’t want that.
I want him and me to have
a bond, like,
I want us to be able
to go fishing and I want us to be
able to go hunting
and do stuff together. JUDGE LAKE:
And that upsets you? Yes, ma’am. I see your eyes,
they’re watering. It…
It… When you look, it’s like your trying
not to see, but you just feel like
you can see this other man. Yeah, like, I don’t see myself
when I look at him. (EXHALES) I can tell it hurts. So, for 22 months, you’ve been
looking in this child’s face trying to see some… Resemblance,
something of you. Some part of me. Some part of my family. So, every time
you go pick him up, every time you’re with him, you see the other guy, but you
just try to block it out. Yes, ma’am I try. Did you sign
the birth certificate? No, ma’am. And why did you not sign
the birth certificate? Because I had doubts that AJ
wasn’t mine then. JUDGE LAKE:
So, even then at his birth…
Yes, ma’am.I don’t know, like, I love her
so, I want to give her the benefit of doubt. SMETHERS: That’s not what
he told me. So… He… The social worker had
to be there to be the notary.
Every time the notary came in he was at work.
But, he was constantly
telling me, when we were in the hospital
that he was gonna sign it. So, were you
making up excuses,
Mr. Stevens, to avoid executing
the birth certificate? No, ma’am. I wanted to,
but I just can’t.I have been there for him
through everything and I
held him when he was born.
I kissed him on his forehead,
and I told him I wasn’t ever
gonna go nowhere.
It’s like the doubt is just
haunting you. Yes, ma’am. He just don’t
really look like me,
like, like… See… She’s like… Ms. Smethers
tries to say, like, you know, he’s got my nose
and everything like that, but I don’t know, like, I don’t
see myself having a flat round nose like,
I see myself having a long, pointed nose, kind of. So, you going feature
by feature just trying to see
some resemblance to yourself and your family. STEVENS: Ears, everything. JUDGE LAKE:No, I mean,
it’s not even funny.
It will drive you crazy.
It really will.
22 months of this.
Every day? Ms. Smethers your friend,
Ms. Craig is in court today. JUDGE LAKE:She’s a witness
that I’d like to hear from.
Jerome, will you place escort
Ms. Craig into the courtroom. Yes. Ma’am. Ms. Craig, thank you
for joining us today. You’re welcome. Ms. Craig, how do you know
Ms. Smethers? I’ve known Ms. Smethers
for about 10 years. We’ve always been really
close friends. So, you know we are here
discussing the paternity
of baby Adrian. Yes, Your Honor. What do you know about
this paternity issue? I know that Mr. Stevens
has had doubts about Adrian belonging to him. What has Ms. Smethers told you
about the situation? She has said that she
had doubts. JUDGE LAKE: She told you
she had doubts. That’s not true. Well, why would she
sit up here and lie?
She’s your friend. I have no idea why
she’s lying. But, that’s not true. What did she tell you,
Ms. Craig? This is why we are here, to get the truth.
What did she say? I mean, she had expressed
to me, we had a conversation that she had some doubts that Joshua was
the biological father. Ms. Smethers, you are saying
you don’t remember
this conversation. No, I do not. JUDGE LAKE:
Why do you believe she would
come all the way to court, as your friend, and just
make this up? I honestly have no idea. But, I have never
doubted Adrian being Mr. Stevens’.
There’s no way. When you hear Ms. Craig
testify, Mr. Stevens… Yes, ma’am. That basically validates
the doubt you’ve been having? Yeah, because, like,
at the same time, like,
this is her best friend. So, like, yes, she would…
She can… She confides her secrets
in the people that she trusts. STEVENS:And, with AJ,
he’s just the ugly duckling
of the family.
I guess, that would be
something like that. Who said that… Who? What? You know what I’m saying,
the rest all of them match
and like there’s this one that doesn’t match. Oh, you’re saying
it’s like thatSesame Streetthing, which
one doesn’t belong? Yes, ma’am. And you’re saying
all the features line up
in all the other children. And then he looks…
‘Cause there nothing ugly
about that baby. STEVENS:I know. That was
just a comparison.
Let’s just make that clear.AUDIENCE: (APPLAUDING) Where are you all
in your relationship
right now? As of today, like,
if AJ is not mine, like… No, there is no
working nothing
out ever. Like, if AJ like, dude,
like, no, like… That what you did
was low and then for me
to have to wait five months. And, I didn’t
find out from you. What you did was low. I found out from
somebody else. Yeah, like, there is no… You dint find out
from somebody else. I admitted to it.
Somebody just told you. I gave you… It’s like you just said you admitted to it after
I questioned you about it
because someone else told me. SMETHERS:
Yeah, but I admitted to it. Okay. So, you didn’t tell me,
somebody else told me. So, I had to confront you. I’m more concerned
about this relationship
that she had, that she says was
90 days before you all
got back together. If her timeline is off
in any way then, and she’s expressed
doubt to her best friend, that should be really
your point of proof.
That’s doubt. There’s no reason
for her friend to come
into this courtroom, best friend for 10 years, but she has to tell the truth,
so, she told the truth. Ms. Smethers, do you want
this relationship to last, to work, with Mr. Stevens? I would like it to work out.
That’s why I’m here to prove
that he is AJ’s father. Because you want to keep
your family together. Yes. And, if for some reason,
he is not his
biological father, have you thought through that? I really haven’t because
I have no doubt that he’s
his father. JUDGE LAKE: Does the other guy know that Adrian is born,
that he is here? Does he have any
feelings about whether or not Adrian
is his biological child? We’re from a small,
little town and everybody knows
everybody’s business. He actually went around town,
from what I heard, saying that he was his and then when
I confronted him about it, he was like, “No,
I didn’t say that.” And he completely denies
that he said it now. Hmm. That’s odd. Yes, it is.
But, you know what, we’ve got the results. So, we can get down
to the bottom of this,
right now. Jerome, the envelope please. These results were prepared
by DNA Diagnostics and
they read as follows. In the case of
Smethers v. Stevens.
When it comes to 22-month-old
Adrian James Stevens… JUDGE LAKE: It has been
determined by this court… Mr. Stevens… You… Are the father. AUDIENCE: (APPLAUDING) I was happy to deliver those
results to you. Thank you. I can see this means
a lot to you. Yeah. How are you feeling
in this moment, to know you do have your son? Right now, I’m happy. Good. Right. JUDGE LAKE: Listen… Every day, I’m
in this courtroom, I hear something
about, “he cheated, “so I went out and did this.” And that… It never…
It never… The story never
ends well. It just doesn’t. Revenge cheating leads to regret. It’s just that simple.
It always leads to that. If you gonna have
a relationship you
have to focus on how to have
a healthy relationship. Cheating does not make
a healthy relationship.
It just doesn’t. Do you want to be
committed, Mr. Stevens? Yes, ma’am. Do you want to be committed,
Ms. Smethers? Yes. Okay, so now we got at least
to the place where you all
want the same thing, okay. So, now we have four things in common. Three children,
beautiful children and the desire to be
in a committed relationship
with one another. That’s a great start. Let’s stay in that place
and figure out how
to go from there. You have to set boundaries, you have to set parameters because every time you fall,
every time you fail, the children suffer. And I want you to really
think about how we
move forward on a better path
with our children. So they can grow up healthy,
and happy and have a family
they deserve, all right? STEVENS: Yes, ma’am. I wish you the very best.
Court is adjourned.

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