(BLACKMEDIASCOOP) R&B singer Usher and his ex-wife, Tameka Raymond, faced off in court in Friday for an emergency hearing as she said her children are unsafe in his custody after one nearly drowned on Monday.
Usher Raymond V, 5, became stuck when he tried to pull a toy out of a swimming pool drain at a home his father was renting in Atlanta. Two audio-visual contractors working at the home freed him and performed CPR while Usher’s aunt Rena Oden called 911.
“The child is fine,” Usher’s attorney, John Mayhew, said in an opening statement. “The child is fortunate that he has a loving, caring parent.”
Attorneys for Tameka Raymond put Oden on the stand and she said she was not formally trained in CPR but learned from her mother, a nurse. She said she knew how to swim and that a back injury that caused her to receive government disability did not interfere with her swimming.
Tameka Foster Raymond is the mother of Usher’s two sons, and had numerous criticisms of Usher’s parenting.
Mayhew said that Usher had canceled “over 87 concerts and (other) live appearances” to spend time with his sons.
“My son basically had died,” Tameka Raymond said of the Monday incident. She said that Usher did not tell her about the accident for an hour after it happened and that he said the boy had a cut on his arm, only later mentioning the pool drain.
Usher and Tameka Raymond married in 2007 and divorced two years later. They went through a lengthy child custody battle, and Usher was awarded primary custody of the boys last year.
Tameka Raymond said Usher does not answer her emails or phone calls about her sons. She said she has not left the hospital since the accident except for Friday’s court appearance, but that the singer has not been there often. “Where has he been at night when his son is in the hospital?” she asked.
The 911 call after the accident was played for the court. Oden could be heard on the phone relaying information and also calling Usher’s other son, 4-year-old Naviyd, multiple times.
“The whole scene was chaos,” Tameka Raymond said before breaking down in tears. “I think (Oden) is a good person and a nice family member. A nanny, no.”
When Usher was asked why he took an hour to call his ex-wife about the accident: “The first thing to do was to respond to the emergency.”
“My son was hysterical and in the back of an ambulance… he didn’t want to go to the hospital. He was very irate. I did my best to calm him down and help him understand what had taken place… He just wanted me to put a Band Aid on it,” Usher said.
Tameka Foster Raymond testified earlier that Usher told her their son only had a “cut on his arm” when he called her.
Usher said this wasn’t exactly the case and that he didn’t know the severity of the incident and that he “wanted her to remain calm.”
Foster Raymond’s attorney is also asking Usher about the pool: “I had no reason to suspect something was wrong with the pool.”
If something goes wrong in the pool, Usher said he had a plan in place with Aunt Rena: “The first thing that she’s to do is to contact myself or dial 911 if it’s an extreme emergency.”
Usher said he notified Foster Raymond on several occasions about changes to the children’s caregivers, contrary to her earlier claims. He also said he’s scheduled to be in Atlanta for the remainder of August.
The children’s activities are outlined in a weekly email, according to Usher. He said he tells Foster Raymond about doctor’s visits, summer camps or the travel information (including the alias hotels are booked under) in the rare event he travels with the kids.
As the attorney tried asking why Usher doesn’t update Foster Raymond on his travel plans, the judge jumped in: “An emergency means life and death – that these kids are in danger and need to be somewhere else.” He told her to move on with her questions — Usher is dismissed.
Moments after USHER finished testifying on the stand the judge ruled in his favor saying he didn’t see any reason to take the boys away from USHER.
Superior Court Judge John Goger… “What happened here was an awful accident and… I’m not certain that had any single person been at the poolside that one person could have done any better than Ms. Oden. And Ms. Oden did impress me as a capable caregiver.”
“Your standards for caregivers are rather high,” Goger said to Tameka Foster Raymond, pointing out that most people have been watched by a grandmother or aunt.
He also tells Usher to keep his ex-wife informed about his whereabouts and who’s taking care of the kids.
One of the most shocking moments came at the END – after the judge ruled in his favor – Usher got up and approached Tameka – giving her a long hug. It was a beautiful thing because folks one day those kids will have to see this mess on the internet about their parents fighting.
BELOW IS TAMEKA on the stand lawwwd
TAMEKA PART 2:
WHAT DO YOU THINK? DID THE JUDGE DO THE RIGHT THING? Views: 52382