NFL's ‘T.O.' may face jail time over child support

by: Erica Byfield Updated:

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NFL superstar Terrell “T.O.” Owens is $20,000 behind on child support payments and may be facing jail time.


Channel 2’s Erica Byfield was the only reporter at his child support hearing at the Fulton County Courtroom on Thursday. Owens, a former wide receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals, did not show up, and Judge John Goger was upset. 

Owens' attorney, David Hartin, told the judge it was his fault Owens was not there. He said he didn’t communicate well with his client.

Melanie Smith, the mother of Owen’s 7-year-old daughter, said he has not made child support payments in months. A previous agreement required Owens to pay Smith $5,000 per month.

"It's a tragedy, not only that we are here today; this is the third case she has had to file in the last year," Smith’s attorney Randy Kessler told Byfield.

Less than 10 minutes into the hearing, Goger called both attorneys into his chambers.
When they returned, Byfield learned the case was reset for July 19 and Owens could face jail time if he does not show up.

"We are hoping next week the case will come to a resolution and Mr. Owens will pay and pay every month," said Kessler.