Debbie Rowe tells a reporter she wants custody, and a battle for Michael's kids looms.
Despite her lawyer's advice to stay silent on her decision about seeking custody of Michael Jackson's children, Debbie Rowe gave a controversial interview to a local Los Angeles television station on Thursday, according to the New York Times.
"I want my children," she told NBC-LA in a 90-minute phone interview. She said she's willing to to undergo DNA testing to prove that she's the kids' mom and that she's psychologically stable. Debbie had son Michael Joseph Jackson, Jr. ("Prince") in 1997 and daughter Paris Michael Jackson in 1998 via artificial insemination. After a three-year marriage, Debbie and Michael divorced in 1999 and Debbie handed full custody of their two children over to Michael. When child molestation charges were brought against him, Debbie pursued partial custody of the children, saying that Michael was not their biological father. I Knocked Myself Up: Pregnancy On My Own
(Um, have you seen Prince? He could start his own Jackson Five. The boy is Michael's.)
Recent reports suggest Debbie has even offered to take Michael's 7-year-old son, "Blanket," as his biological mom was a surrogate in Europe who has never been named.
Following the interview, Debbie's lawyer held a press conference stating that her decision on seeking custody is not final, and that she intends to keep it private out of respect for the Jacksons in their time of loss. One expert has stated that under California law, biological parents have legal rights to their children even if they're not the legal guardian; however, Debbie will have to meet a super-high standard to show that she's an important figure in the children's lives. This could be a tough feat: most accounts suggest that Debbie has no relationship with the children she and Michael had together.
The original custody hearing was scheduled for Monday, but Michael's mother Katherine Jackson, who has been granted temporary custody of the children and who is said to be their intended guardian in Michael's will, asked the court for a rescheduling. Follow us for updates surrounding the July 13 hearing.