Deion Sanders Wins Custody Of Sons, Estranged Wife Pilar Claims ‘Prejudice’
Deion Sanders won a big legal battle on Monday when a judge awarded him full custody of his two sons. (Photo: Creative Commons / ericifeng)
Deion Sanders has won full custody of his two sons and joint custody of his nine-year-old daughter in a battle with his estranged wife, Pilar.
According to TMZ, both Pilar and the ex-Dallas Cowboy were arguing for sole custody of each of the three children. However, 11 of the 12 jurors in the trial decided to award Deion control of his 11-and-13-year-old sons.
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"I'm thankful; I'm elated," Deion Sanders told DallasNews.com after the ruling. "In any war, there will be casualties, but I didn't want the casualties in this case to be my kids."
WFAA reported that Pilar was unhappy with the jury's decision and claimed the case was biased against her from the start.
"So many pieces of evidence, solid facts, were not able to be admitted as evidence," she told reporters. "Now if that's not prejudice ... if that's not one-sided ... you have to be blind, dumb, crazy, and stupid."
Per NBC Dallas-Fort Worth, Pilar Sanders was particularly upset that evidence of her ex's alleged physical abuse were not admitted into the trial. However, Deion's lawyer the site that many jurors felt these claims were overblown.
"One of the comments they made was that they did not believe the allegations of abuse," said Rick Robertson. "That they were offended by cheap shots and grandstanding - and that was a comment some of the jurors made to us."
During the trial, both sides argued over Deion and Pilar's parenting skills. According to DallasNews.com, Robertson showed jurors a photo of Pilar's behind that she posted on her Twitter page, arguing that this showed her poor judgement. Pilar's lawyer, meanwhile, argued that Deion is too self-centered.
"Mr. Sanders loves his children ... but loves himself more than anything in the world," Larry Friedman said in his closing statement. "It's all about Deion."
According to HollywoodLife, the custody dispute in question began after Deion filed for divorce in September of 2011. However, the relationship supposedly turned violent a few months later, in April of 2012. That night, Pilar allegedly kicked the kitchen door and slapped Deion numerous times. He then carried her out of the room by her waist. Deion was cited for assault in the incident, while Pilar spent the night in jail.
Per ABC News, Deion Sanders later tweeted a photo of himself and his sons filing police reports after the incident. The images were later removed.
"Pray for me and my kids now!" he wrote at the time. "They just witnessed their mother and a friend jump me in my room. She's going to jail n I'm pressing charges!"
A few weeks later, Deion won temporary custody of all three of the couple's children, per ABC News. A district judge also told Pilar to stay at least 500 yards away from the house.