'American Idol' Star Syesha Mercado Loses Custody of Daughter After Son Was' Legally Kidnapped'

Photo: (Photo : Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Verizon)

Syesha Mercado made quite a name for herself when she competed in "American Idol" season 7 in 2008. She's once again in the headlines after she shared an Instagram video, where she revealed that authorities took her newborn daughter.

The singer, living in Manatee County, Florida, said that she had to give up her baby girl after a surprise welfare check from the authorities. In the clips, she can be heard begging the police deputies that they can't take her baby since she's still breastfeeding.

Mercado had to pump some breast milk for the police to take with them, but she could also be heard telling the authorities that they have no heart and were destroying an innocent child's life.The hour-long video has since earned over 2.5 million views and has gone viral on the platform.

Mercado was with her partner, Tyron Deener, when they were accosted on the road. 

According to the reports, the police took Mercado's infant daughter to the hospital for a check-up following allegations that her other child, Amen'Ra, an 18-month-old boy, has severe malnutrition issues.

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In February 2021, the authorities also took Amen'Ra to the hospital to be assessed by a doctor based on a tip from a child abuse hotline that the baby has been severely dehydrated. Amen'Ra was turned over to the care of the Manatee Child Protective Services.

Kids Now in Foster Care

Mercado accused the authorities of "legally kidnapping" her son. To fight for her right, the singer will have to face court in November.

The mother denied that she medically neglected Amen'Ra when she refused a B12 shot for the baby. She also said that her son had difficulty weaning off from breastfeeding, hence the dehydration and malnourishment accusations, but she refused to acknowledge that she didn't take care of her son.

The authorities said that Amen'Ra was evaluated for his health issues, with doctors saying that he will need "ongoing, consistent treatment" or he could die. However, reports cited that the doctor who evaluated Amen'Ra, Dr. Sally Smith, was accused in 2020 of quickly accusing parents of neglect, which she has denied.

When Mercado and Deener tried to visit their son, who was getting treatments in March, the local Child Protective Service and the county police barred and banned the parents from the hospital. Mercado also said that Amen'Ra was assigned to a Caucasian foster family without Mercado's consent. The singer said that she wasn't even asked if they had family or friends who could take care of her son.

Syesha Didn't Inform Authorities

On the other hand, her daughter remains under protective custody and could likely be placed with another family. A spokesperson for the Manatee County Sheriff's Office said they also took the 10-day-old baby because Mercado didn't inform them of her birth amid her custody battle for Amen'Ra.

However, Deener and Mercado said that their daughter had just seen her pediatrician and was given a clean bill of health. They noted that the officer who took the baby refused to listen.

After learning about the new baby, Deener, a youth service professional in the foster care system, also told the authorities to seek their lawyers. However, no one from the Manatee Child Protective Services spoke with their legal representatives informed them. Instead, they found themselves swaddled in the surprise welfare check on the road.

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