A Mecklenburg judge has issued an order for arrest for former professional wrestling champion Ric Flair, who was held in contempt earlier this month for not paying his estranged wife more than $32,000 in spousal support.
Flair, one of Charlotte’s best known celebrities whose given name is Richard Fliehr, was ordered to pay $4,000 a month to Jacqueline Beems, who filed for a legal separation last summer. The money was intended to go for her car payment, health insurance and legal fees.
But following at least two court orders, Flair didn’t pay $32,352.51, according to court documents obtained by the Observer and Brad Smith, Beems’ attorney.
The order for arrest was issued on July 3, but the wrestler can avoid jail time if he pays what he owes, according to court documents.
Flair told the Observer Tuesday night that he planned to pay Beems on Wednesday.
“The reason I didn’t pay my ex-wife the 32 grand is because my son died and I was in the hospital for a month,” Flair said. “I was in the hospital for a month with a blood clot. I didn’t go to work for three months.”
Reid Fliehr was found dead by his father on March 29 in a SouthPark hotel room, part of a suite where Ric Flair was temporarily living. Fliehr, 25, died from a toxic combination of heroin and prescription drugs, according to the autopsy.
Smith said his client doesn’t know where her estranged husband is. He also said recent accusations that Beems made harassing phone calls to Flair’s new girlfriend are “unfounded and outlandish.”
On Tuesday, Beems turned herself in to authorities and was charged with making a harassing phone call, a misdemeanor. She’s accused of making a series of phone calls to Wendy Barlow Kidder, Flair’s girlfriend, according to Smith. Beems was released on a $500 unsecured bond.
“Miss Fliehr is eager to have her day in court on this as well,” Smith said.
But Flair told the Observer that his estranged wife has threatened his girlfriend.
“My girlfriend Wendy Kidder is the mother of four and she has 50 texts and five phone (voice-)mails from my ex-wife,” he said. “They didn’t give Wendy a warrant for arrest without looking at all of that stuff.”
Flair and Beems were married in November 2009 and separated in June 2012, when Beems accused her husband of committing “acts of marital misconduct.”
“Husband has had numerous intimate relationships with other women during the parties’ marriage to the embarrassment and humiliation of wife,” the complaint alleged.
Flair has denied the allegations.
The couple’s nearly three-year relationship has made news before.
In February 2010, a few months after they were married, police were called to their south Charlotte home because of an altercation. Beems was charged with misdemeanor assault after the two got into a fight. The charges later were dropped by police for lack of evidence.
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