TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Country singer Mindy McCready, who had been reported missing, spoke with Florida authorities Wednesday and is aware of a court order to return her 5-year-old son by Thursday afternoon, police said.
Cape Coral Police Lt. Tony Sizemore said McCready and her son are not in the Lee County, Fla., area, and that she is "currently outside of the terms of her family court stipulation." She knows that she is supposed to bring her son back to Lee County by 5 p.m. Thursday, he said. McCready, who has had drug and alcohol problems, lost custody of her son in 2007 after a fight with her mother and resisting arrest.
"The million dollar question is whether she will comply," said Sizemore.
The state Department of Children and Families said a missing person report was filed with Cape Coral police Tuesday night after McCready took her son Zander from her father's home.
McCready's mother has custody of Zandler and the singer was allowed to visit the boy at her father's home, according to a department spokesman. On Tuesday, DCF discovered that McCready and the boy were not at her father's home.
DCF spokesman Terry Field told The Associated Press the agency asked a Lee County judge for an emergency pickup order, and the judge ruled McCready must return the boy voluntarily by 5 p.m. Thursday or risk an arrest warrant.
Meanwhile, McCready said on Facebook that she is not missing.
"I have been fighting the Florida court system to protect my son, and bring him home," she posted, adding that she spoke with Cape Coral Police via Skype — something that the agency confirmed.
The singer's brother, Josh McCready, told The Associated Press in a private Facebook message that his sister was "fine."
"Mindy is fine and so is Zander. There is nothing to worry about," he wrote.
Kat Atwood, McCready's publicist, issued a statement Wednesday saying McCready and her son are "safe, healthy and comfortable," and denies that she has done anything wrong. The statement says McCready has been awaiting a court order on whether she would be awarded custody of her son.
"No Amber Alert has been issued; this is not a missing child case," Atwood said in the statement.
According to Aimee McLaughlin of the Childrens Network of Southwest Florida, a case manager filed a missing person report with the Cape Coral Police on Tuesday. The DCF spokesman said Children's Network of Southwest Florida is the Community-Based Care agency for the area.
Since topping the country charts in the mid-1990s with her music, the troubled 36-year-old singer's life has been filled with domestic abuse, drug and DUI arrests and a suicide attempt. In August, she filed a libel suit in Palm Beach County against her own mother and the National Enquirer's parent company, American Media Inc., over a story published in the tabloid newspaper that quoted her mother.
In 2010, she spoke with The Associated Press about her life.
"It is a giant whirlwind of chaos all the time," she said. "I call my life a beautiful mess and organized chaos. It's just always been like that. My entire life, things have been attracted to me and vice versa that turn into chaotic nightmares or I create the chaos myself. I think that's really the life of a celebrity, of a big, huge, giant personality."
In July 2007, she was accused of scuffling with her mother and resisting arrest at her mother's home in Florida. She was sentenced to jail for 60 days for a probation violation and released; she served 30 days in jail. She also lost custody of her son.
And in 2008, McCready was admitted to a Nashville hospital after police said she cut her wrists and took several pills in a suicide attempt.
During the TV show "Celebrity Rehab 3" in 2010 McCready came off as a sympathetic figure, and host Dr. Drew Pinsky called her an angel in the season finale.
On the show she said she suffered from love addiction, not substance abuse. In one of the show's scarier moments, McCready suffered a seizure and was rushed to a hospital where scans showed brain damage.
Also in 2010, police went to McCready's mother's home for a report of an overdose, and McCready was taken to a Florida hospital. However, neither the hospital nor McCready's publicist would say why McCready was hospitalized.
Cape Coral is on Florida's Gulf coast, about 120 miles northwest of Miami.
McCready also fought the release of a tape in which she reportedly talked about former Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees pitcher Roger Clemens, with whom she had an affair as a teenager.
A call to a lawyer representing McCready in the custody case was not immediately returned.
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AP Entertainment Writer Chris Talbott and reporter Caitlin R. King contributed to this report from Nashville.