FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - The fight over the surviving child of a woman killed in her apartment last week sparked an angry outburst outside a courtroom today where a hearing was held to determine who should get custody of the 11-month-old boy.
Sonya White said she was in court protecting her grandson, LaDanian Belizaire. The boy is the son of White's daughter, Octavia Barnett, who was slain along with Natasha Plummer and her son, Carlton, in Lauderdale Lakes over the weekend.
LaDanian was unharmed, and now the Department of Children and Families and the courts are attempting to decide whether to award custody to White or Tevin Montgomery, a man who claims to be his father.
Now, with the suspect still on the loose Ladainian is still in protective custody.
"As soon as they give us the all clear, we'll go ahead and place the child," State DCF Spokesperson Mark Riordan says.
That prompted the alleged father to leave without a word. And prompted the grandmother to break down into a violent fit just outside the courtroom. She was punching walls, crushing cameras, and crying out to anyone who could hear.
"I was there protecting him," she screamed.
No decision was reached Tuesday, and afterward White reacted angrily to the delay, slapping a cell phone out of the hands of a reporter and screaming at the media.
Broward Sheriff's Office detectives have asked the courts to hold off on releasing the child until they finish their investigation of the crime.
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