ORLANDO, Fla.,None - The prime suspect in the disappearance of Orlando mother Michelle Parker has won a round in court, authorities said on Thursday.
Dale Smith II no longer has to pay child support. Smith is the father of Parker's twins.
However, if Parker is found alive, Smith will have to resume paying child support, said a judge.
The judge's decision comes at an interesting time because WFTV has learned that Smith was fired from his job this week.
The decision means Smith will now be able to get back child support he's paid since Parker disappeared.
The state said it was holding the money automatically deducted from Smith's paycheck since Parker disappeared.
Smith's attorney argued that it did not make sense because the money was sitting in an account and was not being used for the children.
The judge's decision also means that Smith can get the money in that account back and use it on the children.
"It's important that all funds are available to the children," said Smith's attorney, Stanley Silver.
Silver said Smith likely wouldn't have to pay the money retro-actively if Parker is found alive since he has custody of the children.
Silver said he was likely fired from his cabinetry company due to being a suspect in Parker's disappearance and the ensuing media attention.
More than two months after her daughter disappeared, Yvonne Stewart is back at work at the hair salon she owns in Oviedo.
"It's been nine weeks today at 6:00 tonight," Stewart said.
Stewart said seeing her grandchildren is one of the highlights of her life.
But Stewart said she hasn't been able to see them in the past two weeks.
"It seems so unfair that I don't get to see them. Grandparent rights in Florida need to be addressed," Stewart said.
Stewart told WFTV she understands a judge's decision to put Smith's child support requirement on hold until Parker is found.
Smith did not attend the child support hearing, but Parker's friends did.
They held up signs with unproven allegations against Smith.
Stewart said she hopes her daughter is alive, but she now doubts it.
"I know you say you hope she's still alive, do you believe it?" WFTV reporter Lori Brown asked.
"I really don't believe it," said Stewart. "But I know there's a heaven, and all of our lives are short. We'll all be together again one day."