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"She felt she could not get Michael's attention or cooperation or response without the retention of a legal representative." They had been dating since mid-1985 and Juanita thought they'd be planning a wedding by now. She was not the least bit indecisive." Vanoy hired Minton that warm Midwestern summer day, and directed the lawyer to pursue a paternity suit against the most famous and revered athlete in Chicago -- and soon, the world.
"They were saying, 'We're emotionally committed to each other.' But this was not exactly like Ozzie and Harriet." Minton's recollection is that Jordan admitted paternity within a few months, but financial discussions continued.
After Jordan was named president of the Wizards in early 2000, he was still able to spend significant time in Chicago, and his family sometimes visited Washington when he was here.
But sources say Jordan has not been home much in recent months, since announcing in September that he would play again, and Juanita's divorce filing asserts that they have lived "separate and apart" for some time.
None of them will say what pushed her over the edge in a marriage that has withstood an unforgiving fishbowl, aggressive groupies and constant travel.
Some point to Michael's decision to make a second comeback, as a player for the Washington Wizards, guaranteeing that he would spend even more time away from his family and huge home in the upscale Chicago suburb of Highland Park.
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A well-known Chicago private investigator, Ernie Rizzo, said in an interview last week that he had observed Jordan in compromising situations in the company of a half-dozen women, including a Denver stripper, over the past 10 years.