After three years in court, Amber Portwood has lost custody of her 4-year-old son, James, who will be moving from Indiana to California with his dad, Andrew Glennon.
The Teen Mom OG star’s ex was granted sole legal and primary physical custody of their child, per court documents obtained by The Sun. Glennon, 38, is also allowed to move James from Indiana — where Portwood, 32, is living — to Glennon’s home state of California. In addition to the ruling, the judge advised the videographer to “seek out and consider the mother’s opinion before making any major decisions relating to the child’s medical treatment, education and religion.”
The ruling puts an end to the child custody battle between the MTV star and her ex, which began soon after Portwood — who is also mom to Leah, 13, with ex Gary Shirley — was arrested for domestic battery after allegedly wielding a machete at Glennon over the 4th of July weekend in 2019.
Per Marion Superior Court documents obtained by Radar Online at the time, “[Amber] struck the machete at and into a door, while Andrew Glennon was standing directly on the other side of the door, that created a substantial risk of bodily injury to Andrew Glennon.”
The Ashley’s Reality Roundup obtained an affidavit of the incident, which alleged that Portwood struck Glennon with a shoe while he was holding James, who was 14 months at the time.
“Mr. Glennon stated when he got inside the home, Ms. Portwood grabbed a shoe off the shoe rack and hit him with it. Mr. Glennon stated he was holding [the baby] and he turned to the side to avoid [the baby] getting hit with the shoe,” read the affidavit. “Mr. Glennon stated he then left [the house] again with [the baby].”
Portwood was arrested and later pleaded guilty to two felony charges of domestic battery and intimidation, per the Indy Star.
The Never Too Late author’s rocky relationships with her children — and exes — have played out on Teen Mom OG for years, with much of her season 9 story line focusing on the difficulties in her relationship with Leah.
While Portwood and Shirley split custody of their daughter, Leah lives full-time with her dad, stepmom Kristina Shirley and half-sister, Emilee. On the 2021 season of the MTV hit, viewers watched as the teen explain why she didn’t feel comfortable speaking with her mom, who she felt was an absentee parent.
“All she did was just give birth to me and then just kind of left,” Leah said in one episode.
The Indiana native, who has been candid about her struggles with mental health, has had her fair share of legal drama in the past. In addition to pleading guilty to two charges of domestic battery during a 2011 incident with Gary, Portwood served 17 months in prison after she violated probation in her drug possession case.
The 16 & Pregnant alum has detailed her mental health diagnoses and substance abuse issues on Teen Mom OG, on social media and in her memoirs over the years.
“I have really horrible anger problems because I’m bipolar and borderline, which is not an excuse, but at the time I didn’t know it, so I wasn’t really taking care of myself or really understanding why I was feeling certain emotions,” she revealed on the “Dopey” podcast in 2018, revealing her hard partying led her to get into violent altercations, while the money from reality TV made her easy prey for drug dealers.
“When you’re making a lot of money, there’s more drugs,” the mom of two said at the time. “Every time a drug dealer had a new stash, of whatever, they called me first because they knew I’d buy the whole [stash], because I had the money to do it. It’s never helps.”
Four years later, however, Portwood seems to be in a much healthier place, releasing her second memoir, So You’re Crazy, Too?, in February — and going on Instagram Live shortly after the custody news broke to discuss the importance of breaking mental health stigmas.