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Billy McKnight, Mindy McCready’s Ex, Hopes to See Son Zander This Afternoon

Billy McKnight
Courtesy of Billy McKnight

Singer-songwriter Billy McKnight says that if all goes well during a court hearing in Arkansas today, he should be able to see his son later this afternoon or early tonight. During an interview with Taste of Country this morning, McKnight shared that he never thought Zander was in immediate danger with Mindy McCready, but he’s preparing to deal with any longterm effects the nearly two-week long ordeal has had on the 5-year-old.

McKnight tells Taste of Country that he isn’t sure if charges will be pressed against McCready, his ex. The ‘Ten Thousand Angels’ singer broke the terms of their custody agreement by leaving with Zander after the Thanksgiving weekend, but authorities were careful not to label the case a kidnapping. McKnight had granted her an extended visit.

“She called me up before Thanksgiving and said, ‘Hey, look Billy, I’m going back home and I’m going to have these kids [McCready is expecting twins]. I’m not going to be able to be down here. Could I keep the baby this weekend?’ And I offered that to her, and when I did that she took him,” McKnight revealed, adding that the current custodial agreement grants him unsupervised visits with Zander four nights a week, a result of years of hard work to stay sober and prove he can be a great dad. The boy stays with his grandparents the other nights of the week. He explained that McCready’s visits must be supervised by her parents.

After McCready and her son were found in the closet of McCready’s boyfriend’s house on Saturday, Zander was held by the Arkansas Division of Children and Family Services. McKnight said he doesn’t know where the boy has been staying over the last 48 hours. Since it’s a high-profile case, the case worker hasn’t provided many details.

“That’s been disturbing,” McKnight told us. “I know he’s OK because they stayed in contact with me, but I haven’t been able to talk to him personally since the day that he was found. I talked to him that day.”

Moving forward, McKnight expects to have full custody of Zander by early 2012. “The attorney for the state and the case worker … they’ve already voted me to have full custody,” he said. “The judge is extending it [the current custody agreement] 90 days to see if she could get on board and get her case plan wrapped up so he could get it out of the state’s hands and into ours. Instead of complying, she did what she did, which is going to set her back probably a pretty good bit.”

Stay tuned to Taste of Country for more from our exclusive interview with Billy McKnight.

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