In an interview with “20/20,” Mindy McCready alleged that her son Zander was hit with a wooden spoon by Gayle Inge, the child’s maternal grandmother and legal guardian.
The country singer was back in the news this month after she took Zander, whom she lost custody of in 2007, from Florida to Arkansas before Thanksgiving, violating a court order.
“I have tried to comply, I have tried to follow the rules of the court,” McCready said of her attempts to regain custody of her son. “I did what the system told me to do in overabundance. I did it for four years, and after four years ... [I got] nothing.”
McCready said she felt justified in taking her son, saying she wanted to protect her child from Inge. “That sweet grandmother is not sweet at all.” The singer claims her son told her that Inge is “so mean that her heart is black.”
McCready’s grandmother said in an affidavit, obtained by “20/20,” that Inge hit Zander with a wooden spoon and subjected him to “harsh discipline.” McCready claims there are scars on his body.
Inge told “20/20” she has never abused her grandson.
McCready said she and her siblings suffered mental and physical abuse as children, a claim Inge also denies.
After McCready failed to return Zander to Florida by a court ordered date, U.S. Marshalls took custody of the child. Authorities said McCready and her son were found hiding in closet, but McCready denied this to “20/20,” saying she was on a couch.
Zander’s future seems to be up in the air. The results of McCready’s most recent court date with an Arkansas judge are sealed. But the singer said, “Zander is in Arkansas and this is where he’s going to stay.”