Teen Mom star Jenelle Evans was given custody of her teenage son, Jace Evans, in March 2023, following a decade-long custody battle. Just months later, fans believed Jenelle’s mom, Barbara Evans, had already regained custody of her grandson following a string of runway attempts on Jace’s part, resulting in CPS involvement.

Is Jace in Barbara’s Custody?

Jace was reportedly spotted in Barbara’s care on October 11, 2023, nine days after In Touch exclusively confirmed that he was checked into the hospital after being reported missing for the third time. A photo of Jace seemingly riding in Barbara’s car made its way to social media, with Teen Mom stars Jade Cline and Briana DeJesus even resharing the snap to their own Instagram accounts with the banner, “Jace back with Barbara!!!!!!!!?!”

While fans assumed Barbara had regained custody due to the widely shared image, Jenelle’s manager denied those claims in a statement to In Touch. 

“No he is not in her care. Jace is visiting grandma. CPS is not investigating,” Jenelle’s manager exclusively claimed to In Touch that same day of Child Protective Service’s involvement. “CPS is not investigating. We are still in contact with CPS but it is more of a collaborative effort to make sure Jace is 100%.”

Jenelle’s manager previously confirmed to In Touch on October 2, 2023, that CPS got involved with the MTV star’s family situation once the teenager was checked into the hospital. 

“Jace is still in the hospital yes, they are doing a mental health evaluation,” he shared. 

That same day, it was also revealed that during Jace’s third disappearance on September 28, 2023, Columbus County Police visited Jenelle’s mother’s home. During the visit, Barbara told authorities that Jace claimed Jenelle’s husband, David Eason, had assaulted him, according to an incident report obtained by The Ashley on October 2, 2023.

During Jace’s hospital visit, sources later told TMZ on October 4, 2023, that Jenelle and her husband were under investigation by CPS after visible marks were found on Jace’s neck and arm. The alleged assault is believed to have happened at someone else’s home, according to the publication. A Ring camera on the property was taken by CPS and police amid the investigation.

After David was charged with misdemeanor child abuse on October 24, 2023, Jenelle revealed that Jace was “temporarily” in Barbara’s custody.

“They are looking to possibly transport him somewhere else due to his behavior in the past,” she told The Messenger on October 26, 2023. “That’s one reason why I got custody. My mom would call David and say ‘Can you come help me, he just ran out of the car.'”

After a months-long battle, Jenelle revealed via TikTok that “CPS took a voluntary dismissal” against her and David in February 2024.

“All allegations against me and my husband have been officially dropped,” she said in the February 15, video. “I wasn’t going to share this information. I was actually gonna keep it private and just kind of give a vague statement. But right now, I need to control the narrative now that this case has been dropped.”

Jenelle concluded, “I’m focusing on Jace’s mental health and I want to focus solely on his mental health right now.”

How Did Jenelle and David React to Barbara’s Claims?

After the September 28, 2023, police report was released, the North Carolina native took to Twitter to clap back at her mom’s claims after a fan told her to leave David.

“This isn’t about David whether you want to blame him or not,” Jenelle began before she directly addressed her mother on October 2, 2023. “My mom says a lot of untrue things lately to everyone about me but wanted me to have custody? Imagine what you don’t hear from my side.”

Jenelle Evans Denies Son Jace Was Found Using Snapchat Location
Courtesy of Jenelle Evans/Instagram

David also broke his silence in response to Barb’s claims, issuing a statement via Instagram on October 3, 2023.

“It takes a sick person to spread lies on the internet about a child! Then the rest of you are sick for chiming in like you know something because you read their lies,” he captioned a photo of him, Jenelle and their kids via Instagram. “You people really need help! Our kids are in our custody and anything you read is not true!”

He went on to state that the “police reports have been falsified and the truth is already apparent to everyone involved” and insisted that “Barbara is NOT involved and she is NOT allowed to speak to him right now.”

Jenelle has been adamant in her defense of David and claimed via TikTok on October 15, 2023, that he has “the most patience I’ve ever seen.”

“He is being accused of some horrible, horrible s–t that is not true. I was there, my kids were there, everyone was there. You guys have no idea about the details,” the mother of three added. “It just makes me really sad for David. Because David is like, he’s just taking all of these punches, rolling with it, not saying s–t. I don’t blame him, and I feel really bad for him because my kids adore that man. My kids love that man so much.”

When Was Jenelle’s Son Jace Reported Missing?

Jace was reported missing for the first time on August 15, 2023, by the Brunswick Co. Sheriff’s Department after he left school. With the help of his location on social media, he was later located “in the trees behind the school building.”

Two weeks later, Jace was reported missing a second time on August 28, 2023, after Jenelle hadn’t heard from him for several hours. He was eventually found at a gas station near the family’s home.

The 16 & Pregnant alum’s 14-year-old son was reported missing for the third time on September 28, 2023. Jenelle told authorities that her son snuck out of a window of their home and he didn’t have his cell phone with him, according to TMZ

Jenelle shared an update two days later, telling her social media followers that Jace had been located

“I just want privacy for me and my family right now,” Jenelle said in a video clip on September 30, 2023. “He’s safe but that’s not the point of this video. I just kind of want to keep my content away from the drama right now, kay?” 

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