Britney Spears earned a rare court victory today when a Los Angeles County judge granted her request to hire her own attorney to represent the singer in her ongoing conservatorship battle.
Here's what else happened:
- New attorney: Spears has retained former federal prosecutor Mathew Rosengart, who attended the hearing Wednesday. The decision came after Spears told Judge Brenda Penny at a hearing last month that she wanted to hire her own attorney to advocate on her behalf, stating that she had been forced by her conservators to perform, take lithium and remain on birth control against her will.
- Calls for justice: An emotional Spears said she would like to bring formal charges against her father Jamie over his role in the conservatorship. "I would like to charge my father with conservatorship abuse,” said Spears, speaking to the court by phone, breaking down in tears at times. “I want to press charges against my father today,” Spears said. “I want an investigation into my dad.”
- Heartbreaking testimony: At one point during the hearing, Spears said she felt that those in the conservatorship "were trying to kill me." "If this is not abuse, I don't know what is," the singer added. Spears called her conservatorship "f--king cruelty." Spears told the court she was not willing to be evaluated to remove her father from the conservatorship, saying she has “serious abandonment issues.”
- New attorney speaks: Spears’ new lawyer called on her father Jamie to voluntarily step down as her conservator, saying it was “in the best interest” of his client. “Jamie Spears should be removed as conservator because it is in [the] best interest of the conservatee,” Rosengart, a veteran entertainment litigator now representing the singer, said outside the courthouse today. “We will be moving promptly and aggressively for his removal. The question remains, why is he involved? He should step down voluntarily because that’s what’s in the best interest of the conservatee,” he added.
- Past legal representation: Since the inception of Spears’ conservatorship in 2008, Samuel D. Ingham had been her court-appointed counsel. He submitted his petition to resign on July 6 after Spears criticized him and asked the court if she could hire her own counsel. In the filing, Ingham stated that the resignation would be effective upon the designation of new court-appointed counsel for Spears.