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Smith’s Ex-Girlfriend Wants Money

March 2, 2000 GMT

DALLAS (AP) _ A former girlfriend of Emmitt Smith told a judge Wednesday she was legally married to the Dallas Cowboys running back and argued she is entitled to half his fortune.

Hope Wilson and Smith appeared before a family law judge Wednesday in Dallas to discuss issues surrounding child visitation rights for their 1-year-old daughter, Regan.

In court, Wilson claimed to be Smith’s common law wife. Her lawyers called for a jury to hear the matter of what they called a marriage and referred to Wilson in court as ``Mrs. Smith.″

Smith’s lawyers objected and the judge agreed to refer to the two as mother and father in court, for now.

Smith was unavailable for comment. Smith’s lawyer, Angeline Bain; Smith’s agent, Eugene Parker; and Cowboys spokesman Rich Dalrymple did not return calls seeking comment Wednesday night.

Under Texas law, if Wilson is legally Smith’s common law wife, she might be entitled to up to half his fortune.

It was unclear whether Wilson lives in Texas.

The 30-year-old Smith finished the 1999 season at Dallas with 1,397 yards _ eight shy of the NFC lead and his best since 1995.