Wednesday, March 16, 2011

NBA star Dwyane Wade awarded custody of sons

It took a long court battle - one of the longest in Cook County history and one most men could not afford - for Dwyane Wade to win custody of his children from his (less than sane) ex-wife. She did everything she could do to destroy Wade's reputation, including accusations that Wade and his current girlfriend had sex in front of the children (as well as other forms of "parental alienation"). The judge ruled that Siohvaughn Wade’s (the ex-wife) "ability and/or willingness to ease these children through a transition" is seriously in question. Ya think?

NBA star Dwyane Wade awarded custody of sons

NBA star Dwyane Wade was awarded sole custody of his two young sons after a bitter battle with his ex-wife, lawyers in the case said today.

“I am very thankful that the court has given me custody of my boys and they are already at home with me in Miami and settling in,” the Miami Heat guard said in a statement. “Going through a custody trial was difficult and I wish it hadn’t been necessary, but, I felt it was the only way that I could continue to play an active part of my kids’ lives and provide them with a happy and stable home. My hope is that their mother will also choose to play a healthy role in their lives and we can all move on from this in a positive way.”

Cook County Circuit Judge Renee Goldfarb issued a 102-page ruling late Friday.
“This is a very difficult decision for this court,” her ruling reads. “This will be an abrupt change for the children. However, this court has very grave reservations about (Siohvaughn Wade’s) ability and/or willingness to ease these children through a transition.”

Goldfarb’s ruling is meticulous, down to who will have custody of the children on holidays, All-Star Weekend and if the Miami Heat are in the NBA finals. The transition of the children, ages 3 and 8, from Illinois to Florida will occur immediately, according to the judge’s ruling. There will be a 30-day period of adjustment so they can acclimate to their new school and surroundings.

Siohvaughn Wade will fly to Miami every other weekend to spend time with her children, with the exception of a few holidays during which the boys will come to Illinois. For the time being the cost of her trips, including “reasonable” airfare and lodging, will be covered by Dwyane Wade.

During All-Star weekend, the NBA star will have parenting time with the boys. If the Miami Heat are in the NBA finals, the boys also will be with their dad, but only if he is a player/participant, according to the judge’s ruling.

"Unfortunately I think the court got it wrong and it’s not in the best interest of these children and fails to recognize that Siohvaughn Wade has been a wonderful mother and a provider for these children, educationally, emotionally and physically," said Siohvaughn Wade's lawyer, Michael A. Haber.

“Mr. Wade, while well-intentioned, just does not have the ability to parent these children.”

Siohvaughn Wade is “extremely disappointed,” Haber said. She is considering an appeal of the judge’s decision.

In court, Dwyane Wade’s lawyer, James Pritikin, accused Siohvaughn Wade of a pattern of erratic behavior. Pritikin contended that she interfered with her ex-husband's visitations and alienated the children from their father.
Pritikin applauded Goldfarb’s decision today.

“In a custody trial that was one of the longest ever in Cook County history, we presented clear evidence of parental alienation against Mr. Wade,” Pritikin said. “The court agreed the best home is with Mr. Wade and that he is also willing to foster a relationship with the children's mother. I know he will continue to be a phenomenal parent.”

Tribune reporter Becky Schlikerman contributed to this report.

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