Woman Told Bus Passenger He May Be A Father (Full Episode) | Paternity Court


Please be seated. Hello, Your Honor.
This is the case of
Lawrence v. Simmons.
Thank you, Jerome. You’re welcome. Good day, everyone. JUDGE LAKE: Miss Lawrence,
you claim that six months ago,
your mother, the defendant, shared a secret
she’d kept from you
your entire life. After 28 years,
believing one man
was your biological father, you’ve now learned
it may be another. You’ve petitioned the court
for a paternity test to find out
if the man waiting outside
of our courtroom todayis indeed
your biological father.
Now, Miss Simmons, you admit
to keeping a lifelong
secret from your daughter. You claim you recently
ran into an ex-lover
on a bus. Uh, you say that,
for the very first time you told this man
that he could be
your daughter’s dad. We’ll meet him
in just a few moments. But first, Miss Lawrence,
please tell the court how your mother revealed
her 28-year secret to you. Um, first off,
I just want to say that I’m definitely emotionally
frustrated with her. Uhm, she called me
about six months ago, and when I answered
the phone, she was
hysterically crying, and of course, I didn’t know
what was going on. And I’m asking her,
“What’s wrong, what’s wrong?” She’s beating around
the bush, telling me
all these random stories. And then finally
she goes into saying that she met some random man
on the bus and that he could
possibly be my father. One day, you were just
sitting at home talking to your mother… Talking to my mom. Just a regular phone call. And out of the blue
she says, that someone else
could be your father. That someone else
could be my father. What did you feel like? 28 years, and you think
another man is your father. Definitely betrayed,
being that we were like
the best of friends. She could have
definitely told me
a long time ago. JUDGE LAKE: Mom,
let me hear from you. What happened? Um, I ran into Rudy
on the bus, one day,
on my way from school. And I’m like, I know him. You know, from my past.
I’ve never forgotten him. And, I say,
“Excuse me, “what is your name?
Is your name Rudolf?” And he says, “Yes.”
I say, “Rudolf Roquemore?” He says, “Yes, it is.” He asks me, “Who are you?” And I look at him like this.
I’m like, for real? Really? And I’m like,
“I’m Yvette.” JUDGE LAKE: Well, okay. “I’m Yvette.” “You better recognize,” huh? (AUDIENCE LAUGHING) DAISY SIMMONS:Exactly.We started talking
for a second.
He even passed up
his bus stop.
We exchanged phone numbers
and just says,
“Call me later.” So, we… You know,
conversated for a while. Like, “Where have you been?
I haven’t seen you
in a long time. “When did you
come back to LA?” I want to know
what the conversation… What happened when it got
to the good part. (AUDIENCE LAUGHING) JUDGE LAKE: Look,
Miss Simmons, she wants
to know, uh, what happened as it
relates to her in this. The fact that this man could
potentially be her father. How did it get to that part
of the conversation? In the conversation
with Rudolf, um… I told him,
“It’s a possibility…” (SIGHS) “…that I may
have your child.” JUDGE LAKE: Wow! What was his response
to this? He say, “What would
make you think that
it’s my daughter?” I say, “Because there is
really no resemblance “to the man
that she calls her father.” And she was… Excuse me. Sorry. I just want to know
why you didn’t tell me
before, like… I couldn’t. I couldn’t.
I had no idea… I had no idea. JUDGE LAKE: When you say
you couldn’t, Miss Simmons, why do you say
you couldn’t? The man that she calls
her father… I mean, she’s a daddy’s girl,
most definitely. I didn’t want to
break the bond
between her and her dad. You know, I thought
I would never see him again. So, I felt that
there was no reason for me
to bring this up to her. I think her initially
telling me
from the beginning would have made it more,
you know what I mean? ‘Cause now it’s just… (AUDIENCE APPLAUDING) You knew, Miss Simmons,
this man really may not
be her father. You made that call
on your own and you’ve held this secret
by yourself, all these years? Actually, I wasn’t even
really sure because me and her dad
had broken up. And when I went back home
and got with her dad, I found out, like,
I was almost
three months pregnant. But once you realized
that you were pregnant, you knew in your mind
that you were not certain who your daughter’s
father was? True. What was your
relationship like,
Miss Lawrence, with your father,
growing up? SHATIKA LAWRENCE:
Oh, it was amazing.
It was amazing. Wherever he would go,
I would go. My dad always made sure
I had money in my pocket. Um, always the flyest… I mean,
back in those days…
I’m a ’80s baby. So, Enyces, Filas, LA Gear. Trust me, I was alive
in the ’80s, too. (LAWRENCE LAUGHING) I won’t tell my age
but I remember
trying to be fly as well. So you had
a good relationship. Me and my dad had a very… I mean,
we still do to this day. We have a really,
really good relationship, and, um… Definitely,
I mean because he,
you know… He had, kind of, like,
that thug-life lifestyle, to where he was,
you know, kind of
in and out of prison. So, growing up,
it kind of affected, like, just me being
in relationships
with men and… I’ve only had one, real
long-term relationship… JUDGE LAKE: Mmm-hmm. …and that’s my
child’s father. And, um, he took care
of me, too. (SOBBING) Like,
he took care of me, like, when my dad
wasn’t there. Um… My baby’s dad
took care of me. I mean,
we would joke around. It would be to a point
to where he would say
certain things like, “You know
who your daddy is.” You know, I mean, like,
I would call him
Dad sometimes. Just because he was
that male figure and… Because you were looking
for that male figure. Right, right. JUDGE LAKE: Now,
Miss Simmons, how does
it make you feel to hear your daughter
say this? It hurts. It hurts a lot. Um, I never
really knew that
she felt like that. Me not telling her
was because
I didn’t want to hurt her, or I just… I didn’t
want to hurt her… You didn’t think that it would hurt me more now
than it would have
a long time ago? I never thought I would
run into him. I never thought
I would see him again. LAWRENCE:But that’s what
I want to know, too.
Like, even still, if you
didn’t see him, like…
I don’t know. I mean, why bring up
somebody that’s not there? He was non-existent. If you hadn’t run into him
on this bus, this was a done deal for you. You were gonna go
to your grave with
your daughter thinking… And that’s exactly
what she said. And how does that
make you feel? That’s deep. That hurts. With all of this happening,
like, everything was
happening so fast, one day,
she tell me about him, the next day,
she’s sending
the man a picture. I don’t know this man.
I’ve never heard him. I never heard about
him, Rud, Rocky… What? Rudolf. Rudolf. LAWRENCE:I don’t know him.JUDGE LAKE:
So, wait a minute.
So, you’re telling me that
since your mother reunited and found Mr. Roquemore, she’s been
sending him pictures and she’s told him
pretty much that… Yeah. …he’s your dad. And he basically… I mean, she didn’t…
I don’t know if she told him that
he was my dad, but it’s to the point where
his family is like, “Oh, she belong to us, then.
She’s a Roquemore
for sure and…” It’s… I’m a Lawrence. Miss Simmons, I need to
understand from you
if you really get what this 28-year secret
has done to your daughter. I mean, you know what, I also didn’t have
a relationship with
my biological father, and for, like, 11 years
I never knew this man.
I had never seen this man. I shared my brother’s
and sister’s dad. And so, when I finally,
you know, met my dad, um, I could identify. Like, who I look like
and all of this. Uhm, he wasn’t
a very good person,
but I digress. But because she had
that relationship
with her father, who she calls her father, who did her hair
when she was little… She didn’t want me
to do it. He combed her hair,
he made her up pretty… (SOBBING) I couldn’t…
I couldn’t tell her. But now, uh… I couldn’t. What’s his name again? Rudolf. Rudolf… (AUDIENCE LAUGHING) Is in sight, in mind. Like, he here now.
Like, he’s around.She know.They be together
all the time. Well, you have
never met this man? Not a day in my life. I think the time is now. I know I wanna
meet him, do you? (AUDIENCE APPLAUDING) Not really. You don’t? But I think it’s
the missing piece to the answers
that you’re seeking. I’ll do it with you.
How about that? Okay. Indeed. Jerome, will you please
escort Mr. Roquemore… JEROME: Yes. …to the courtroom, please? JUDGE LAKE: Good day,
Mr. Roquemore. How you doing? JUDGE LAKE: Please,
step up to the podium. Thank you for
joining us today. Mr. Roquemore,
this is the first time you’ve ever laid eyes on
Miss Lawrence? Yes. JUDGE LAKE:
A young lady that could potentially be
your biological daughter. Yes. JUDGE LAKE: When you
look at her today, do you feel like
this could be
a real possibility? Yeah, I can see
some resemblance
by the eyes. Miss Lawrence,
how do you feel
right now? Hmm, I have butterflies
in my stomach. I really do. I don’t feel like,
there’s any, like, attachment, or like,
he could be my dad or… You didn’t feel anything? I mean, I look at
my dad-dad… The person that I call Dad,
I look at him and I’m like,
“That’s my dad.” That’s who I look like. You know, my mom’s
brown skin and my dad’s
dark skin and… You know, like, I feel like
I look like Mr. Lawrence. When Mr. Roquemore
walked into this
courtroom just now, you felt nothing? Besides us having
the same skin color, no. Mr. Roquemore, take me to
the day that you ran into
Miss Simmons on the bus. I had got on the bus,
and she was sitting across
from me, and I was looking at her,
and she… You were looking at her
because you recognized her or you were looking at her? (LAUGHING) I didn’t
recognize her. I was looking ’cause
she was looking good. When I was looking,
I say… I was saying to myself,
“Well, she got some
beautiful lips.” Not knowing you’d already
been there, done that. (AUDIENCE LAUGHING) ROQUEMORE: Yeah, yeah. JUDGE LAKE: Okay, okay. Exactly. JUDGE LAKE:
I’m with you, though. So at least we know
you’re consistent. You liked her
all over again? Yeah, exactly. She was looking over at me
and when she look at me, I didn’t want her to
see me looking. So I, like, turned my head
a little bit… Okay. Then she asks
was my name Rudolf? And I was like, “Yeah.”
She says,
“Rudolf Roquemore?” I was like, “Yeah.” And she was like,
“Well, I’m Yvette.” And I was like, “Yvette?” And then she pulled her
glasses down and looked
and I said, “Oh, okay.” Then I remembered her
and got her phone number. Mmm-hmm. We exchanged numbers. Then I got off, and
you know, she had called me. (SOBBING) And we talked for a while. She said she has
something to tell me. She said
I might have a daughter. And, you know,
I got quiet at first and… I couldn’t believe it,
you know. I was like… And then she told me
she was 28 years old, and I was like,
wait a minute.
That’s a long time. You know, that’s a lot of time
lost out of a kid’s life. Mmm-hmm. I mean,
when we separated I used to come back
by her mom’s house, and, you know, just see
if I can see her out
or anything, but I guess
they had moved and… I’m sorry. Yes, Miss Lawrence. Yes. Why do you want to know
if I’m your child or not? Because I think it’s
important to know
who are my kids. If I have kids, I’d… It’s been
a really long time. Like, I can’t
fault you at all. I can’t fault you
for what’s going on but… You can’t push me
on the swing no more. (AUDIENCE LAUGHING) No. It’s a lot of time lost.
I mean… Yeah. I can’t be
pushed on a swing,
and no more Big Wheels. What do you think this is? Yeah, I can just
get to know you and… You know, try to spend
some time with you. You know, I can’t take
the place of, if you’re my daughter,
the guy that’s been
taking care of you. I can never take his place,
because he’s been there. But I’d just like to
get to know you and
spend time with you. If he’s found to be
your biological father, what do you want
going forward? Gradually, slowly but surely,
we can, you know, get to
know each other, but off top, initially… JUDGE LAKE: So, you’d be
willing to do that? Eventually. I can’t say…
Not at this very moment, like, “Let’s go home
and sit up and chop it up.” But, um, eventually. Yeah. And if he isn’t your father? I’m going back to Vegas. (AUDIENCE LAUGHING) JUDGE LAKE:
And it would be… I’m not just saying
I’m gonna be excited
that you’re not my dad. But I mean,
this can just be like… I can just brush it
off my shoulders and
continue on with whatever I was doing. It will be a relief. Miss Simmons,
how do you feel
standing in the room now? For one, I want to
apologize to my daughter. I never meant to hurt you or keep something
from you
as important as this. Like I said, I understand
the relationship
between you and your dad and I didn’t want to
bring up old wounds. He wasn’t around.
I didn’t know where he was. You don’t feel like
that apology is sincere? Mmm, well, she’s apologized
multiple times already. (SIGHS) When you stepped into
this courtroom today,
the first thing you did was acknowledge
the fact that the man that raised her,
that she acknowledges
as Daddy, was there for her
and took care of her. And I thought it was
so admirable that
when you asked her whether or not you two could
potentially work on having
some type of relationship, that you acknowledged that
you would never be him but that you could also
be there for her
in your own way. Yes. Well, I think
it’s time to solve
this 28-year mystery. (SIGHS) JUDGE LAKE: Jerome,
do you have the envelope? JEROME: Yes, I do. Thank you. Okay, go slow.
Go slow, go slow. (AUDIENCE LAUGHING) Go slow, go slow. I always do. These results
as prepared by
DNA Diagnostics read as follows.
“In the case “ofLawrence v. Simmons“when it comes to
29-year-old Shatika, “Mr. Roquemore…” You are her father. Oh! (CRYING) Shatika… (SOBBING)
No, leave me alone
right here, please, Mom. Stop. Oh, my God! (SPEAKING INDISTINCTLY) I’m so sorry. Dear God. (LAWRENCE SOBBING) JUDGE LAKE: Miss Lawrence,
there’s some tissue for you. Mom, get back on your side. Oh, man! Can you put your feelings
into words and explain? I can’t even…
I don’t even… I don’t have the words. LAWRENCE: Oh, my goodness. Mr. Roquemore, how do you
feel today? This is… (SIGHS) …I’m sure, overwhelming
for you as well. Yeah, I feel nervous. It’s a lot of time gone to not know
you have a daughter. That’s a secret that
shouldn’t have been kept. Miss Lawrence, a lot of
men in his situation would not step forward
in this way. I know you said
it’s gonna take you some time, but understand that
this truth has opened
a door for you. Don’t look at it
as a closed door, because you’re always gonna
the relationship you have
with your daddy. But look at it that
this truth has opened
yet another door for you. To have another man
there in your life
as a father figure. I wish you
all the best of luck. Court is adjourned. I know
I’ll never be able to
take your dad’s place, but I would
like to be in your life. I thank you for being
the man that you are,
’cause like she said, most men wouldn’t
step up and do things
like this nowadays. It would just be
way over their head
and it would get bypassed. So, thank you for that.

About the Author: Michael Flood

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