“It’s about to go down in custody court y’all!”

The nasty custody battle between Mama June: Family Crisis star June Shannon and her former son-in-law Michael Cardwell is heating up, as the parties prepare to face each other in court next week to fight for custody of Anna Cardwell‘s oldest daughter Kaitlyn.

The Ashley can exclusively reveal that there were two major developments made in the custody battle this week, with one being 11-year-old Kaitlyn filing an affidavit in court that revealed if she wants to live with her grandmother June, or with her former stepdad Michael (who has been raising Kaitlyn’s sister Kylee following Anna’s death in December). 

In the state of Georgia, minors involved in a custody battle who are 14 or older have the right to select who they want to live with, provided the option is deemed suitable. Since Kaitlyn is only 11, she does not have this choice; however, starting at age 11, a child in Georgia can file an Election in court that states which parent/person they prefer to live with.

In her Election filed on Tuesday, Kaitlyn expressed her desire to live with June and asked that she not be forced to have visitation with Michael, who has stated that he’s acted as Kaitlyn’s father figure since she was eight months old.

“My name is Kaitlyn Shannon…I am electing and hereby expressing my desire and intent to reside primarily with my maternal grandmother, June Shannon,” the affidavit states. “I do not wish to have set visitation with Michael Cardwell. I am making this affidavit and this election freely and voluntarily and under no duress or compulsion from any person. I have not been promised any benefits or rewards for making this affidavit.” 

Kaitlyn states that she is aware that her statement will be presented to the judge during the custody hearing.

“I hereby state that this affidavit expresses my current desire and intent in this matter regarding where I desire to primarily reside,” she states. “I also wish to speak to the Judge to inform the Court of my wishes.” 

Kaitlyn’s statement is not the only important document to be filed in the case this week. The Ashley can also reveal that, on Wednesday, a motion was filed with the court by June, demanding that the Wilkinson County Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) bring evidence that is supposedly in its possession that shows “records pertaining to child abuse and/or neglect.” 

The motion claims that whatever evidence is supposedly in the DCFS’ possession is important to the custody case. However, because child abuse records are confidential, an “in-camera inspection” of the records must be done first. (This basically means that the judge will be allowed to look at the records in his/her chambers alone.) Once the in-camera inspection has been done, and if the judge rules that the records are, indeed, necessary to the case, the evidence in question can be presented during the court hearing.

As The Ashley previously told you, June and Michael are set to meet in court on July 18 for the hearing, which will decide where Kaitlyn will live permanently.

Earlier this week, Michael’s fiancé London Smith wrote a heartfelt letter to Kaitlyn on Instagram, stating how much she, Michael and Kaitlyn’s sister Kylee miss her. London also stated that her family currently has limited contact with Kaitlyn, whom they haven’t seen since December.

“We text her tablet and we may or may not get a response,” London wrote. “I think they monitor her tablet with like parental control.”

On a recent episode of ‘Mama June: Family Crisis’ (that was filmed before Anna passed away), Anna revealed that she actually wanted her husband, Eldridge Toney, to get custody of Kaitlyn. Eldridge, however, did not file for custody but has stated that he sees his stepdaughters as often as possible.

June, however, claimed that it was Anna’s “dying wish” that Kaitlyn live with her, and expressed her opinion that Michael only wanted custody of Kaitlyn for financial reasons.

London, however, made it clear that Michael has considered Kaitlyn to be his daughter for years. 

“I don’t understand why it’s been done this way,” she told one person in the comment section of the post. “Michael has been dad to Kaitlyn since she was 8 months old and she calls him dad. It’s just so sad. Neither of the girls deserve this. But y’all just keep praying for us. Court is July 18th.”

Michael stated in his custody lawsuit paperwork that he is against June taking custody of Kaitlyn, declaring that June has been “inconsistent” in Kaitlyn’s life, due to Anna’s long periods of estrangements from her mom.

“Both (Michael and Anna) understood, acknowledged, accepted and behaved as though (Michael) is a parent of the child and accepted full and permanent responsibilities as a parent of the child without expectation of financial compensation,” the documents state.

The Ashley will continue to update on this case as more info becomes available. Stay tuned…

RELATED STORY: Michael Cardwell’s Fiancé Writes Heartfelt Letter to Anna Cardwell’s Daughter Kaitlyn As He Prepares to Battle Mama June Shannon For Custody

(Photos: WEtv; Instagram)