LeBron James may have found a new home in sunny Florida with his ink-still-wet Miami Heat contract, but there is one man putting a damper on his celebration. A 55-year-old attorney named Leicester Bryce Stovell is now claiming to be LeBron’s biological father, and has moved forward with a $4 million lawsuit against the 25-year-old NBA star and his mother Gloria James for fraud, defamation and misrepresentation.
From his Washington, DC office, Stovell spoke with VIBE about this shocking case against one of the NBA's biggest names. —Mikey Fresh
VIBE: You've said that you met LeBron’s mother, Gloria James, in March 1984 at the well known DC bar DC Space and included intimate details about sharing a sexual encounter with her on the same night. Is it possible that alcohol may have affected your memory?
Leicester: No… I just had a few drinks. Well, at least for me. I’m not really sure what she was drinking… they could have been Cokes for all I know. I mean, I paid for the check for both our tabs, but I didn’t pay attention to what she was ordering or drinking that night.
Would you say you consumed enough alcohol to be considered drunk?
No, not at all.
You have a multi-million dollar lawsuit against Gloria and Lebron. Is it just for financial reasons?
The natural way of interpreting the story would be that the core of the lawsuit is to establish whether or not a father/son relationship exists. Like I stated in my complaint, an acquaintance of mine asked if I had a son at Cornell in 2006, and they were very persistent which led me to wonder if I had a son I did not know about.
The second time you said you saw Gloria in June 1984, she said she was pregnant with a son who she would name LeBron. But she didn’t say you were the father. What led you to that assumption?
I didn’t assume anything. I thought she was suggesting that I might be his father. But from my perspective, I told her I didn’t think I consummated during our encounter. So it raised a question in my mind as to whether or not she had been with someone else who had impregnated her. She actually said was that LeBron was the name of a friend of her cousin’s, and I asked her if he could be the father and she laughed and said “no”.
Would you describe the second encounter with Gloria as a hostile or negative one?
Not at all. I was expecting her to stay longer, and then suddenly she said she had to go. I was definitely pleased to see her for a second time. Ultimately though, I had dismissed her whole story… when the bartender from DC Space originally tried to persuade me that Gloria was only 15 years old—that’s when I thought that this whole thing was too bizarre.
When you first found out that she was only 15 years old, what ran through your mind?
The very idea of me impregnating a fifteen year old girl was ridiculous to me. There was a thought of absurdity in my head.
And your last remarks to her were “make sure he plays basketball”. Were you an avid basketball fan? Seems like an odd thing to leave the potential mother of your son with?
It was really just a hunch on what my son might do well in for a variety of reasons. Basketball was something I did well in for the years that I played in high school.
At the time you shared relations with Gloria, were you sleeping with a lot of other women?
No, but I just moved to Washington. In that year I would say that I was “friends” with three or four other females. I wouldn’t say I was tremendously active in dating.