Spears goes to court in quest to gain more time with kids

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREChargers go winless in AFC West with season-ending loss in Kansas City “I’m doing good,” Spears said in response to a reporter’s question as she headed into court dressed in blue jeans, a long dark blue sweater and wearing aviator sunglasses. She sipped from a Coca-Cola can as she approached the courtroom. An attorney took it from her and placed it on a bench as she entered. A few minutes after Spears was sworn in, Gordon asked reporters to leave the courtroom and closed the hearing. During the swearing in, Spears was asked her name and replied, “Britney.” “Britney Spears,” she added when Gordon asked her to give her full name. The commissioner allowed Spears to keep her dark sunglasses on, telling her, “I understand you have a medical condition.” The condition was not disclosed. LOS ANGELES – Britney Spears made a surprise appearance in court Thursday after a commissioner declined to rule on her emergency motion requesting monitored, overnight visits with her children. Spears spent about an hour in a closed court session and then left with her attorneys down a back staircase. There was no immediate indication whether her personal appearance had any result. The pop star showed up after Superior Court Commissioner Scott Gordon held a hearing and then gave attorneys for Spears and her ex-husband, Kevin Federline, more time to discuss the matter outside court. Neither Spears nor Federline were present for the initial morning hearing. As she stood to be sworn in, Spears played nervously with her jeans pocket. Spears’ attorney Anne Kiley requested Thursday’s emergency hearing in an effort to win overnight visits for the pop star who lost custody of her children after Gordon cited her continuing problems with drugs and alcohol. Kiley argued during the morning hearing that the visits are critical for Spears to bond with her sons, 2-year-old Sean Preston and 1-year-old Jayden James. “I do think it is an emergency for them not to have overnights with their mother, which they’ve always had,” she told Gordon. “What possible concern can he (Federline) have if there are monitors present?” she asked. Federline’s attorney, Mark Vincent Kaplan, said it was frustrating that Spears’ lawyers would return to court and try to change Gordon’s original Oct. 1 custody order so soon after it was issued. “If she could remedy all of those problems … in one week, that would be a miracle,” he said. In ordering Spears to relinquish custody, Gordon did grant her some visitation rights but said a monitor must be present and the visits could be cut short if the monitor decided Spears’ behavior endangered the children. Kiley said that Spears’ own mother, Lynne Spears, could be interested in acting as a monitor for overnight visits, and attorneys for both sides alluded to a warming relationship between Spears and her mother. Although the commissioner did not appear persuaded, he adjourned the hearing for 45 minutes so the attorneys could discuss the matter, then get back to him. “If, in fact, there are family members who are present and trying to help, that might do some positive things,” he said. After their meeting, Gordon called the attorneys into his chambers for a private meeting, then adjourned the hearing. Spears arrived at the courthouse a few hours later. Spears, 25, and Federline, 29, were married in October 2004 and divorced last July. During the morning hearing, Kiley told the commissioner Spears wanted to attend but stayed away because of the huge media crush that surrounded the courthouse before dawn. “Nobody should have even known about this hearing today,” she said. “Very, very few people in our office even knew we were appearing today.” Reporters, admitted on a lottery basis, packed the courtroom. Dozens of others who couldn’t get in waited outside with photographers. News media helicopters flew over the courthouse recording the mob scene below. When he took the children away, Gordon said Spears had engaged in “habitual, frequent and continuous use of controlled substances and alcohol.” He ordered her to undergo random drug and alcohol testing twice a week. He reiterated Thursday that he worried that the pop star’s troubles could harm the children. He also criticized Spears for not complying with previous court orders, repeatedly saying that the current custody order taking her children away resulted from her own choices. Gordon told Kiley he had not received any of Spears’ drug test results directly from the lab, as he had ordered, although he had an attorney’s declaration that she has passed them. Spears’ private woes have played out publicly as a bevy of photographers and videographers follow her whenever she leaves home. Among other things, they have photographed her arriving at Hollywood hotspots minus her underwear and partying hard with Paris Hilton and others while appearing drunk and out-of-control. Paparazzi photographers also caught Spears shaving her head, beating a car with an umbrella and hitting a car in a parking lot and leaving without notifying the vehicle’s owner. She recently spent a month in rehab and has been charged with misdemeanor counts of hit-and-run and driving without a valid license for the parked car incident. Spears appeared at the MTV Video Music Awards last month in a performance that was meant to mark her comeback. But it was widely panned, with Spears appearing spaced-out, lethargic and, to some, out of shape. The following week, her management firm dropped her and her divorce lawyer resigned.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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