Stella Lost Her Groove

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Sometimes fact surpasses fiction. Celebrated author Terry McMillan has filed for divorce from her Jamaican-born husband saying she is the victim of fraud since he is gay. The allegations are revealed in court papers filed in Contra Costa County Superior Court. The explosive story was first reported by the San Franciso Chronicle last Sunday. McMillan’s husband, Jonathan Plummer, is 23 years younger.

Their romance is widely believed to have formulated her work of fiction, "How Stella Got Her Groove Back," which was a run-away best seller. That book detailed a hot relationship between an elder woman and a Jamaican old enough to be her son. An earlier book, which became a film, “Waiting to Exhale,� is believed to have sold 4 million copies. Ironically, in an interview in the current issue of Essence magazine on newsstands, McMillan, 53, suggested marital bliss.

Responding to an interviewer regarding her family, she says, “Jonathan, my husband, is good and we’re happy.� The court papers detailed in the Chronicle report suggests otherwise—the couple has been married six years. McMillan contends Plummer used her to gain access to a Green card. “It was devastating to discover that a relationship I had publicized to the world as life-affirming and built on mutual love was actually based on deceit,� the papers detailed in the Chronicle states.

“I was humiliated.� McMillan contends Plummer, who wants to void their pre-nuptial agreement of having an eye on her fortune. “Jonathan has manipulated me from the very beginning in his scheme to come to the United States, become a citizen and get rich through someone else's effort,� states McMillan in her court papers detailed in the Chronicle.

She also claims that he stole $200,000 from her account—he admits to $62,000 and claims he plans to repay it. Plummer himself claims he has been punished by a “homophobic� McMillan, it was reported. “All I want to do is settle the case in a way that's fair to both parties ... and that allows Jonathan sufficient funds to re-establish himself,� Dolores Sargent, Plummer’s attorney is quoted saying in the Chronicle’s report.

There was widespread disbelief in the streets of Harlem today. “You’re kidding me right? Is that stuff for her next movie?� said Ayana Bishop, who added that she’s a big fan of the author’s. “I’m gonna go home and do a google before I believe that.� Another lady, Krista Jefferson, who also says she’s a McMillan fan, was incredulous. “This downlow business is going too far,� she said. “Now we gotta have every brother pass a downlow test?�

But some men were not as forgiving. “You telling me she was sleeping with him for six years and didn’t know the man was gay? I call it denial man, denial,� said Mahmood Ferguson. Moreover, Plummer claimed when he met McMillan in 1995 in Jamaica, he didn’t know he was gay, the Chronicle reports. The two married in 1998 and lived in McMillan’s multi-million dollar home. After the marriage collapsed, the couple went separate wars before last Christmas.

“I was kicked out of the house in December right after I told her,� about being gay, Plummer said in an interview with the Chronicle. Yet, reports the newspaper, McMillan’s court papers state that her husband admitted to his sexual orientation after she demanded for an explanation about “hours of phone calls to a male friend living in Jamaica,� and that she “later learned that Plummer was participating in online gay chat sites.�

Plummer claims McMillan has subjected him to abuse since he confessed he was gay, reports the Chronicle. He claims she went to his dog-grooming business and tossed a ceramic object across the room and called him a “fag.� The Chronicle reports that in a letter by McMillan dated January 14, the writers told Plummer, “The reason you're going to make a great fag is that most of you guys are just like dogs anyway. ... You do whatever with whomever pleases you and don't seem to care about the consequences.�

Plummer told the Chronicle McMillan went to his dog-grooming business and left a bottle of Jamaican hot pepper sauce after writing on it, “Fag Juice Burn Baby Burn,� the paper reports. On June 17, the Court ordered McMillan to pay Plummer $2,000 a month in spousal support and $25,000 in attorney’s fees until a trial on the validity of the prenuptial agreement’s validity and the motion to annul is heard in October, the Chronicle reports. (See

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