The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
An Atlanta woman has filed a paternity suit against former NBA star Michael Jordan, seeking child support and medical expenses, according to published reports.
Pamela Smith said she is also willing to take a paternity test to prove the former Chicago Bulls player is the father of her 16-year-old son, according to TMZ, the first to report the lawsuit filed Feb. 6 in Fulton County.
Spokespeople for Jordan have declined to comment on the reports.
In the suit, Smith said she became pregnant in 1995 and gave birth to her son in June 1996, according to several reports. Jordan was married to his former wife, Juanita, at the time. The two were married from 1989 to 2006, when they divorced. They have three children.
Forbes estimates Jordan, who turned 50 last month, earned about $80 million last year from endorsements and business ties to Nike, Gatorade, Hanes, Upper Deck, 2K Sports, Presbyterian Healthcare and Five Star Fragrances.
The magazine says the former athlete also owns six restaurants, a North Carolina car dealership, a motorsports team and 80 percent of the Charlotte Bobcats basketball team.
“Jordan out-earns almost every member of the world’s highest-paid athletes 10 years after his last NBA game,” Forbes reported.
April Love, whom the Chicago Sun-Times identifies as a spokeswoman for Smith, said the Atlanta woman, who once lived in Chicago, wants Jordan to “acknowledge his son.” Love said Jordan has talked to the teenager, whose name is Grant Pierce Jay Jordan Reynolds but goes by the nickname “Taj.”
“She’s not bashing him,” Love told the Sun-Times. “There’s no animosity.”
Taj posted a YouTube video in December urging Jordan to “come out of the dark” and to “stop being secretive” about being his dad.
“The reason I’m making this video is because I want – I feel like – y’all should know, and I feel like he should be more in my life about it, too, ‘cause if I was somebody’s dad I would want to be in my kid’s life,” the teenager says on YouTube.
Jordan is set to marry his 34-year-old fiancée, Cuban-American model Yvette Prieto, in April.