Both sides claim victory in Sanders case

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by JONATHAN BETZ

WFAA

Posted on May 7, 2012 at 10:24 PM

McKINNEY — After three days of testimony alleging infidelity, poor parenting, and family violence, a Collin County judge has granted Deion Sanders a protective order against his estranged wife, Pilar.

The former Dallas Cowboys star also gets the couple's 29,000 square-foot mansion in Prosper; Pilar has been ordered to stay at least 500 yards away.

Late Monday, Judge Ray Wheless decided he had heard enough. He determined he did not have to hear from the Sanders' children to determine that the former football star acted in self-defense during an altercation at the mansion last month.

"I feel good; I feel good every day," Sanders told reporters as he wheeled a large statue from the courtroom. That piece of art was at the center of a fight between Sanders and his estranged wife.

The statue was introduced as evidence to prove that Sanders would not have been able to swing it at Pilar, as was alleged.

Judge Wheless agreed with Deion Sanders, saying the Hall-of-Famer defended himself against Pilar Sanders when she allegedly jumped him at their mansion in Prosper last month.

"In family law cases, people often say that there are no winners, but Mr. Sanders is pleased with the results today," said his lawyer, Rick Robertson.

The ruling caps three weeks of nasty drama between the couple, which unearthed serious accusations and a deeply divided home where the Sanders often bitterly battled over their three children.

Pilar Sanders put on a brave face after the courtroom drama, even though the judge banned her from the mansion and ruled that her injuries from the scuffle were accidental.

Still, the judge did dismiss Deion Sanders' claims that Pilar committed family violence against him.

"We have one winner, and that's Pilar Sanders," said her attorney, Larry Friedman. "She had a good day in court, and she was vindicated from the false claims that were made against her."

With both parents now claiming victory, the only ones who seem to have lost are their children.

And what started on Twitter when Deion Sanders first broadcast news of the altercation ended on the social media service Monday night.

"The Truth was told Baby!" said the message. "I'm doing my dance with my old falcon uniform on with my Gold jacket over it and some cleats! Lol"

E-mail jbetz@wfaa.com

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