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High-profile Texas custody case resolved

A jury has decided a custody dispute between Deion Sanders and his estranged wife, Pilar. The one-time Dallas Cowboy and current NFL analyst will have sole child custody of the couple's two sons while he and his actress wife will share joint custody of their daughter. The two have agreed to remain in north Texas for the sake of their children.

The court ruling came after a week-long trial in which jurors heard evidence of the couple's bitter arguments, which have become public knowledge. Pilar Sanders accused her husband of trying to choke her on the set of their former reality television show, while Deion Sanders' representatives said the soon-to-be-ex-Mrs. Sanders is vindictive and not trustworthy.

The former football star was said to be pleased with the jury's decision, which will give him sole responsibility for all decisions regarding the education, health and extracurricular activities of his sons, ages 13 and 11. Sanders and his wife will share responsibility for their nine-year-old daughter. Pilar Sanders has indicated she will appeal the decision.

It often is best for the parties to a custody dispute to attempt to reach an agreement on the custodial arrangements for their children before the case goes to trial. With a trial, the parties' disputes are played out in the public forum of a court room. When a jury is tasked with deciding the custodial arrangements, as in the Sanders' case, the outcome may not be what one or both parents wanted or expected. With a skilled family law attorney negotiating a settlement on behalf of a parent, the parent may be in a better position to get a favorable outcome without the expense and emotional toll of child custody litigation.

Source:, "Deion Sanders Wins Child Custody Battle Against Estranged Wife Pilar," Ruth Manuel-Logan, March 13, 2013

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