Jenelle Evans may find it difficult to fight for full custody of daughter, Ensley, whom she shares with ex David Eason after the exes legal battle this past summer.
Jenelle Evans took to her Instagram stories on Oct. 31 to make the big announcement that she has decided to split from husband, David Eason, 31. The 27-year-old Teen Mom 2 star said she’s already started the divorce process, having filed the papers already. And although many took her message to mean that she has filed for divorce already, Jamie S. Getty, North Carolina state family attorney EXCLUSIVELY told HollywoodLife that “It sounds like Jenelle has filed a complaint in family court for what is likely child custody, but Jenelle can’t file for divorce until she and David have been separated for one year.” Jenelle and David share daughter Ensley, 2, and although Jenelle is reportedly seeking full custody of their daughter, Getty says the MTV reality star will have a “hard time” doing so.
“There’s a difference between sole custody and primary physical custody. Sole custody is only appropriate in situations where one parent is fit and the other parent is unfit,” Getty explained before referencing the former couple’s custody battle this summer. Back in May, David seemed to confirm the news in a social media post that he had shot and killed their beloved family dog Nugget after which he claimed to have committed the act after she nipped Ensley in the face. Jenelle later reported the incident to the police, who opened an investigation with CPS. The incident led to her being fired from Teen Mom 2, and temporarily losing custody of Ensley, Kaiser, 5, who Jenelle shares with ex Nathan Griffith, and David’s daughter from a previous relationship, Maryssa, 11.
“Since Jenelle and David went to court this summer for the juvenile matter and the judge found that they were both fit and proper and returned the child to their joint custody, Jenelle’s going to have a very hard time using the argument that David killed their family dog at this point,” Getty continued. “So, if she wanted to use the dog incident as an argument, the time to do that would have been this summer. That ship has sailed. However, if there is something that has happened since then that we don’t know about that would speak to David as an unfit parent, then that is certainly possible.” When it came to Jenelle asking for “full custody” Getty explained Jenelle’s likely intentions. “I think she means primary custody, which seems pretty likely given how young their daughter is now. While I am sure David helped, Janelle probably provided the majority of the care while they lived together as a family.”
Getty further clarified, “Primary physical custody means that both parents share custody, but that one parent has custody the majority of the time. The courts are turning more now to equal physical custody. Whether or not Jenelle has a good case to fight for primary physical custody really depends on the judge and the facts of the case. If Jenelle and David go to court and throw a bunch of mud at each other and both tear each other down, then I could see a judge saying they’re both equal and rule that they must have equal physical custody. It’s really specific as to what judges do. It’s always in the judge’s discretion and different judges have different views on child custody.”
Meanwhile, David broke his silence on the matter just a few days later on Nov. 3. David posted a throwback photo of Ensley and Maryssa, and the comments section became flooded with fans (and haters) making remarks about the split. “So glad Jenelle got smart!” one person wrote, to which David clapped back, “Nope, she’s still stupid.” Jenelle must have really upset David because his not-so-nice commentary came less than a week after Jenelle released her statement. The mom-of-three also wrote, “Like anyone else I want what’s best for my kids and I want to be happy. With time away from ‘Teen Mom’ I’ve started to look at my, life differently and i know I need to make changes. I’m starting that now. The kids and I have moved away from David,” Jenelle revealed. “Nobody gets into a marriage expecting it to end but I know that’s what is best for me, and for my kids. Today I’ve filed the papers to start that process.”