LOS ANGELES – #FreeBritney campaigners erupted for joy Wednesday afternoon after a judge ruled to suspend Britney Spears’ father from guardianship which fans say effectively jailed the pop singer for more than a decade.
Spears fans who gathered outside Los Angeles County Superior Court cried and hugged each other, screaming with both glee and relief. “You did it,” a pro-Spears activist was heard among dozens of people in the crowd.
Judge Brenda Penny’s decision to suspend Spears’ father James “Jamie” Spears as a Tory represented both an emotional climax and legal justification for grassroots activists who worked to gain attention. national on the case.
Claudette Lalí Anaya, who said she worked as a stylist for Spears in the late 1990s, broke down in tears after the news broke.
“It’s a miracle,” she said. “It’s what she deserves. Her light will shine brighter now.”
Throughout the afternoon, protesters outside the courthouse chanted “Hey, hey, ho, ho, the guardianship must go!” “What do we want? Free Britney! Some could be heard singing hits like “Baby One More Time” and “Toxic”.
In the hours leading up to Penny’s decision making, attorneys outside the Stanley Mosk courthouse stood on a stage at the entrance and shared stories about people who struggled under guardianship, such as former “Star Trek” actress Nichelle Nichols.
Rio Hamilton, who said her mother was under guardianship in New Mexico, credited the #FreeBritney movement for drawing greater attention to some of the issues at the heart of the legal guardianship debate.
“They are literally taking equity, property, whatever they can from vulnerable people,” Hamilton said.
The jubilation that spread through the crowd was also clouded by the realization that their fight is not over. Spears will continue to live in guardianship, at least for the time being.
The court appointed a California accountant, John Zabel, as temporary custodian of its finances.
“I feel really relieved for Britney, but of course the ordeal is not over yet,” said Hygin Shim, one of the protesters.
Corinne Levy and her 18-year-old brother Jonathan left work Wednesday with two friends to join the protests, each carrying pro-Spears signs.
Corinne Levy, who grew up listening to Spears’ music, said her first impressions of the pop superstar were shaped by the frenzied paparazzi coverage of the early 2000s.
“I thought she was crazy,” Levy said, but “thinking about it now, I just feel disgusted. I want revenge on her.”
Alicia Victoria Lozano reported from Los Angeles and Daniel Arkin reported from New York.