Comedian Chris Rock and and his estranged wife filed divorced papers separately nearly a year ago, last December.
Now, Malaak Compton-Rock, has come out to make it clear that the 7-year-old South African girl living with the family on a visitor visa since infancy — though not yet adopted — has been “cherished and adored” as part of the family.
Compton-Rock’s lawyer, David Aronson, states that the child is indeed part of the family. Compton-Rock wants the comedian to support the child according to the terms of the divorce.
“Although Chris Rock is a celebrity, Malaak and the children are not. Protecting the privacy of her family remains of utmost importance to Malaak. She is saddened by recent tabloid media reports which are full of erroneous speculation and inaccuracies that are hurtful to three innocent young girls. While the adoption by Malaak is not yet finalized, it is actively in process under the rigorous guidelines and safeguards of international adoption policy,” Compton-Rock’s lawyer said in a statement to People Magazine.
The former couple had a court hearing in a New Jersey court on Nov. 16. There were still disputes over child support, alimony, counsel fees and insurance. The presiding judge has set a date for another hearing next year.
The young girl, Ntombi, lived with the family since 2008 but was never truly adopted by the couple. She appeared with the family at movie premieres in the past and the family also enrolled her in the New Jersey school system. The Rocks made it their priority to take the child to South Africa for regular visits with her biological family.
While divorce is a sad and tedious process, the children in the middle, including Ntombi, will be hurt the most.