“I just want to return to my life”: Britney Spears made rare public remarks at a regulatory hearing
On Wednesday, Britney Spears asked the judge in a raw and emotional speech to end the supervision of money and affairs that had controlled her since 2008.
Since Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brenda Penny did not make a last-minute decision to terminate the proceedings on Wednesday, the pop star’s words were heard in public court for the first time in 13 years of supervision.
She said that she hadn’t controlled her financial situation for a long time, and she wanted to sue her family and regain her autonomy.
“I just want to go back to my life,” Spears said in a speech in court. “It’s been 13 years, it’s enough.
“I really believe that this kind of supervision is an abuse of power.”
Fans gather outside the court
Dozens of fans from the so-called #FreeBritney movement gathered outside the courthouse before the hearing, holding signs that read “Now release Britney!” And “Get out of Britney’s life!”
Jennifer Preston, 33, traveled across the country from Richmond, Virginia, outside of the hearing, because she said, “I’m a mom and I’m a fan.”
“We are here to hear what she has to say,” Preston said. “For the past 13 years, she has been treated like a child; she has no control over her life or finances, even though she is clearly capable of doing these things.”
Spears, who spoke remotely in court, asked for a hearing so that she could speak directly in court.
Her court appointed lawyer Samuel Ingham III made this request at a hearing on April 28. He did not say what the pop star wanted to say.
But in recent court documents, Spears sought to have a greater say in who was in charge of the takeover, and demanded the removal of her father, who had extensive power over most of her life and money.
Watch | The #FreeBritney movement supports Britney Spears’ struggle for autonomy:
Spears said through Ingham that she was afraid of her father James Spears, as long as he can control his career, she will not end the two and a half years of his career.
The judge refused to remove James Spears completely, even though he now plays a smaller role. Together with the real estate management company Bessemer Trust, he serves as the co-custodian of his daughter’s finances. In 2019, he handed over the role of protector of his daughter’s life choices to professionals appointed by the court.
Sarah Wenz, an attorney for Fox Rothschild in Miami, told CBC News that Britney Spears’s regulatory nature is very abnormal, while Spears continues her career as a well-known singer.
Wentz said: “It would be very abnormal if a supervised person can still attend the awards ceremony and live in Las Vegas.”
“This is one of the unique features of this case… We don’t know if any permanent diagnosis shows that she cannot regain control of her life.”
Last week, Britney Spears said on Instagram that she is not sure if she will perform live again.
“I don’t know,” she said when a fan asked when she planned to be on stage. “I am very happy now. I am in a transitional period in my life and I am enjoying myself. That’s it.”
Spears’ first public speech
Also on Wednesday, Spears said she had faked her happiness to a large extent in the past, hoping it would help her improve her emotional state.
She said that reality is much darker.
“I’m traumatized. I’m not happy. I can’t sleep,” she said. “I’m very angry. I’m crazy.”
Britney Spears had talked about supervision in court before, but the court was always cleaned up and the transcripts were sealed.
As we all know, the last time she spoke to the judge was in May 2019.
Spears later asked the court to increase transparency, while Petunia allowed more people to remain open.
The singer never asked the court to completely terminate the supervision, although she emphasized in the document that she reserves the right to do so at any time.
It was implemented when she experienced a mental health crisis in 2008. She believes it saved her from financial crisis and maintained her status as a top pop star.
Her father and his lawyer emphasized that she and her property (court records show more than $50 million) are still vulnerable to fraud and manipulation. According to the law, Spears has the responsibility to prove that she is capable of being released and free to make her own choice.