December 10, 2011 8:23pm PT by Jethro Nededog
Mindy McCready Defends Herself on '20/20': 'I'm Not a Kidnapper' (Video)
Country singer Mindy McCready, the object of a cross-country manhunt after taking her son, Zander, from her mother and his legal guardian from Fla. to Ark., has a very different story from the ones we’ve heard. The search ended last week when Ark. authorities seized the child from McCready.
“I’m not a kidnapper,” McCready, 36, says in an interview on Friday’s 20/20. “I’m not an unfit mother, I’m not a drug addict, I’m not an alcoholic – I’m none of these things that have been said about me.”
The singer goes on to say that she was protecting her five-year-old son from her mother, Gayle Inge, whom he had been living with in Fla. for more than four years. The singer, who is currently pregnant with twins, says Inge abused her son.
“She looks like a sweet 55-year-old grandma,” McCready says of her mother. “That sweet grandmother is not sweet at all.”
McCready’s grandmother and Inge’s mother supports the singer’s claims saying in a signed affidavit that she had witnessed Inge harshly disciplining the child and “feared that Zander would be physically harmed permanently.”
“There are scars on Zander’s back,” she says. “There are scars on his bottom and his legs from [a wooden] spoon.”
As of now, Cape Coral, Fla. police say McCready hasn’t broken any laws, despite reports to the contrary. Currently, the country singer gets another chance at pleading her case for custody in an Ark. court.
The star says her desire to get Zander back has led her to get herself clean after two bouts with substance abuse addiction, which led her to appear on the third season of VH1's Celeb Rehab.
Watch McCready’s interview on 20/20 below.
Email: Jethro.Nededog@thr.com; Twitter: @TheRealJethro