LOS ANGELES – A judge on Wednesday intervened in the turmoil roiling the Jackson family, appointing the son of Tito Jackson to serve as temporary guardian of Michael Jackson’s children in the absence of the family matriarch and amid a feud over the pop superstar’s estate.
Superior Court Judge Mitchell Beckloff temporarily suspended Katherine Jackson as the children’s guardian because she was in Arizona and hadn’t spoken with them in several days. He appointed Tito Joe “TJ” Jackson to serve as temporary guardian with the ability to control the hilltop home where the children live and to take on other supervision duties.
Katherine Jackson told ABC News that she was hurt by the court ruling and it was “based on a bunch of lies.”
“I am devastated that while I’ve been away, that my children, my grandchildren, have been taken away from me, and I’m coming home to see about that, also,” she said reading from a prepared statement.
She denied the suggestion made in court and in court filings to support TJ Jackson’s appointment that she was being held against her will.
“I am here today to let everybody know that I am fine and I am here with my children, and my children would never do a thing to me like that, holding me against my will,” she said while her children Randy, Janet and Rebbie were seated next to her.
Beckloff said there was no evidence that Katherine Jackson had done anything wrong but instead it appeared she was being prevented from fulfilling her role as guardian through the “intentional acts of third parties.” He didn’t elaborate but made the decision after reading court filings in which TJ Jackson expressed concern that Katherine Jackson was being prevented from returning.