Mother to Request End to Sister's Guardianship of 'Modern Family' Star

Shanelle Gray is the sister and temporary guardian of 15-year-old Ariel Winter, who is known for her role on "Modern Family."

The mother of 15-year-old Ariel Winter will ask a judge next month to end her other daughter's temporary guardianship of the "Modern Family" actress.

In a sworn declaration filed Feb. 15 with Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael Levanas, Chrisoula Workman says she will make her case for removal of Shanelle Gray as her younger daughter's guardian on March 29, when the judge is scheduled to decide whether to terminate or extend Gray's role.

"I intend to present evidence demonstrating that this guardianship proceeding should never have occurred in the first place," Chrisoula Workman says in her court papers.

Gray, 34, was named temporary guardian of her younger sister on Oct. 3. According to court documents, Winter contended she has been subjected to physical and mental abuse by her mother, who has vehemently denied the allegations and filed multiple declarations from family friends who claimed they had never seen any abuse.

Winter stars as brainy teen Alex Dunphy in the Emmy Award-winning ABC series.

The mother's new court papers state that Ariel's father, Montrose resident Glenn Workman, also objects to the temporary guardianship and believes "all proceedings associated with this temporary guardianship have been unnecessary."

Glenn Workman was put in control of his daughter's finances in December as part of a settlement by all the parties involved. Levanas said the various parties were "trying to resolve some difficult family issues," which he described as "really difficult."

During a November hearing, attorney David Booth, addressing the court on behalf Glenn Workman, said his client opposed Gray's temporary guardianship of the teenage actress and was willing to move back into the family home and live with his daughter. He said her mother would agree to leave the residence.

The judge noted that the county Department of Children and Family Services found evidence of emotional abuse toward Winter, but not physical abuse.

Chrisoula Workman's declaration is part of a reply to a motion by Gray for $160,000 from her sister's estate to cover her attorneys' fees and associated legal costs in the guardianship case. The mother's new attorney, David Glass, states in his own declaration that the fees should be limited to no more than $50,000

Glass says he worked for a year in the same law firm, Kolodny & Anteau, that now represents Gray. He contends many of the costs cited by Kolodny & Anteau are "unjustified or unsubstantiated."

A hearing on Gray's fees motion is scheduled for Friday, but Glass wants Levanas to consider delaying a decision until the March 29 guardianship hearing.


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