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VICKI GUNVALSON: Brooks Ayers… What’s On “20/20″ Tonight!!!…Is ‘Real Housewives’ Star a Deadbeat Dad?… VIDEO

June 29, 2012  9:03 pm

NOTE:   Nicolette/Brooks story will be a part of  “20/20″ starting at 10:00 pm…

Is ‘Real Housewives’ Star a Deadbeat Dad?

By SUSAN WELSH and SUSIE WHITLEY
June 29, 2012

Vicki Gunvalson is probably best known as the only original housewife still standing on Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of Orange County.” Recently on the show, the divorced businesswoman has fallen for a 45-year-old businessman from Mississippi named Brooks Ayers. Ayers has been described as a deadbeat dad on the show, a label which he and Gunvalson often deny, but now a former girlfriend says she has the proof.

“He has not supported his child,” Nicolette Catanzarite told “20/20.” “He bailed on the hospital bill, the pediatrician bill, and left me with all of it.”

A 41-year-old model and hair salon owner from Indianapolis, Catanzarite is the mother of Ayers’ 3-year-old son. But she didn’t always have such choice words for Ayers. When she first met him, he swept her off her feet.

“I met Brooks in 2007 in Atlanta on a golf trip and he just kind of was a Southern charmer without a doubt,” Catanzarite said. “He just always said the right things at the right time.”

Catanzarite said Ayers treated her like a princess — opening doors, wining and dining her, and giving her a promise ring.

“He did mention that he was going through a divorce and that he was legally separated and that he had three children,” Catanzarite said. “It wasn’t appropriate that he would ask me to marry him while he was still married so he gave me a promise ring.”

Catanzarite said Ayers seemed so up front about his life that she never doubted anything he told her.

“I just believed everything that he said,” says Catanzarite.

Ayers told Catanzarite, who was a divorced mother of four, that he wanted a fresh start…and this time without children. She says he explained to her that he had had a vasectomy.

“It made him sad that he could never, if we were ever to get married, be able to have a baby together,” she said. “I bought it hook, line and sinker.”

When Catanzarite found out she was pregnant a few months in to the relationship she was surprised, but assumed his vasectomy didn’t take and this was a sign.

“I was like, this is gonna be the best kid in the world,” Catanzarite said, thinking that she would be with Ayers for the rest of her life. “I just couldn’t wait to have him and really always thought that this was such a blessing.”

Looking back Catanzarite says the vasectomy was the first of his many lies. Shortly after their son was born she says she noticed Ayers’ behavior was becoming erratic and things quickly went downhill.

“Within two or three weeks I started seeing kind of a different behavior from him,” Catanzarite said. “He was obsessive, angry, moody and controlling with me. It was very strange.”

Catanzarite said he even lied to people about having nose cancer. As Ayers’ lies began to mount, Catanzarite found herself in a quandary.

“Our electric bill was getting shut off, my phone was getting shut off and I didn’t know he hadn’t been paying the rent on the house,” she said. “He would always make up excuses and say the judge has held the escrow account and they’ve locked all their funds until the divorce was final.”

Soon after their son’s birth Catanzarite says Ayers disappeared and he has not been a part of his life at all.

“No birthdays, no cards for Christmas, no phone calls, nothing,” Catanzarite said. “It’s very frustrating.”

In 2010, Catanzarite sued Ayers for child support and they later entered an agreement that Ayers would pay Catanzarite $700 per month and child support arrears of more than $2,500. She says she has received little of that. Catanzarite had been trying to track him down but says she but could only find a post office box number for him. One night a friend insisted she turn on the TV and that’s when she discovered her son’s dad was appearing on “The Real Housewives of Orange County.” Ayers was actually hiding in plain sight for millions to see.

While Ayers reportedly owes thousands of dollars to Catanzarite, he is living large on television flashing new veneers and buying a mink coat for girlfriend, Gunvalson.

Brooks Ayers is no heir to any fortune. He has been arrested for DUI and later pleaded guilty to reckless driving. He has also been arrested for failure to pay child support. Gunvalson gets a lot of flak from family and friends on the show who can’t believe she is dating and defending a man with questionable character.

Recently in an interview on an online TV show, “Ask Dan and Mike,” he brags about how he is an involved father.

“I speak to my kids every day,” Ayers told the host. “I have three kids by my previous marriage and one extra child as well.”

Catanzarite was heartbroken and angry when she heard Ayers refer to their son as an “extra” … on SH May 6, 2012…and it was because of this interview that she decided to speak out for the first time to “20/20.”

In the online interview, Ayers speaks publicly about his support for his children.

“I’ve been in jail as a result of getting behind on child support and I have learned from that. I am happy to tell you that we got everything current. I never walked away from my kids.”

Catanzarite says that’s not entirely true. She says she has yet to see a dime from him and has a warning about the man she thought she knew.

“He’s a manipulator, he’s a liar, he’s a con, he’ll do or say anything to anybody, anytime, anywhere, to get what he wants,” said Catanzarite.

Although she continues to pursue the thousands of dollars she claims Ayers owes her in child support, Catanzarite is not bitter. She says she has found happiness in a new relationship and is raising her son in a loving environment.

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178 comments on “VICKI GUNVALSON: Brooks Ayers… What’s On “20/20″ Tonight!!!…Is ‘Real Housewives’ Star a Deadbeat Dad?… VIDEO

  1. Nicollete said: “…I didn’t know he hadn’t been paying the rent on the house…”

    WTF? Seriously. How can one half of a couple NOT KNOW if bills are being paid? This is what happens when you depend on a guy to take care of you.

    • My son thought his former girlfriend was paying the rent they were supposed to split 50/50. She took his money and spent it on herself and didn’t pay the rent for months, and then left him for another guy. She was a female Brooks. He trusted her. It happens.

  2. Hello All! I have been a lurker for LONG time and finally decided to post. I just had to say this is the best site ever. I can barely stand to stomach watching any of these shows anymore so I come here to read the recap and the comments. I don’t know where or how you get your info but it is fabulous.

    • housewife: Welcome! Now that you’ve escaped from lurkerville, you cannot go back! LOL!! SH has many sources… many held in strict confidence until they agree to be revealed. TFC!! SH

  3. Hi all, I have always loved this site! I’ve commented a few times about different things. This is amazing work on y’alls part finding & showing the truth.
    What burns my butt is he’s from the south! Not all Southern men are like this ass! Take it from this Mother of 4 son’s who has raised them in the Heart of Dixie with a man born and raised here. 26 years and counting.
    I remember Vicki telling her daughter during their arguement that he’s NEVER lied to her! He’s told her all about all his past. I wonder if that’s true?
    Vicki doesn’t handle truth directed at her well at all! I wonder how she will handle all this? Will she become defensive and stay with him? Will she dump him and go on the “IM A VICTUM TOUR?”
    The whole thing is sad!!
    A dear friend of mine was able to get the Father of her children income tax returns. It seems something could be done.?

    • Dizzie: Welcome! Crooks did state via twitter that he would show his tax returns! SH has asked him to do so… no response… Crooks may have already BLOCKED SH though! LOL!!! TFC!! SH

      • I’m not a follower of his but can be should u need me to? Just throwing that out there. And thank you for the welcome. :-)

        • Dizzie: Would appreciate anyone who can follow @BrooksAyers to do so… as SH is blocked! So sad! Surprised @AskDanAndMike haven’t blocked SH yet! Wonder what they think of “their guy” Crooks now??? LOL!! TFC! SH

          • Consider it done SH.
            About the fur, was I the only one that was like “WHAAAT?” when he handed her that awful fur? I mean don’t these HW all do the PETA photo shoots? It blew me away she didn’t think ahead how people would react to that!

          • yep lol , maybe they ask if he buys the PROMISE RINGS by the cases i to got one from brooks in 2004 with the same line … brooks really has a same type game that he play on all women … i wonder just how made there is ,2007 must have been a very busy year for him ,lets see me, nic, kim, and vicki danm he was busy ….how that working out now for u brooks lmao

    • The vast majority of viewers realize Brooks does not represent Southern men any more than those HW bimbos represent women in Orange County. The most vocal critics of these “housewives” are women who live there, and I’m sure no Southern man would have anything to do with phony Brooks.

  4. Vicki just posted on Twitter About That Gawd Awful Fur Coat, but No Comment about DeadBeat Dad Crooksy!!! She has a new blog explaining that she and Peta came together in an agreement that wearing Fur is cruel…

    • She also had a go at Sarah for having a leather handbag. The woman shoots herself in the foot everytime she opens her mouth or types online! For an ‘intelligent business woman’, she certainly is a sandwich short of a picnic!

    • IMO the blog about the fur is a pathetic attempt to highlight that issue and brush the 20/20 Cheaters about Crooks under her soon to be repossed carpet.

      • Yep. She’s quiet, very quiet. So is Crooks from what I can gather.

        It’s the kids I feel sorry for in all this. Crook’s 4 kids who have such a prat of a father, also Mike for being right in the middle of it all as he lives and works with his Mum. He must be so tired and stressed out with it all. Finally Briana, she should be enjoying her new marriage and have nothing on her mind but to look forward to having her first child. But no, even for her own daughters pregnancy there has to be a drama involving Vicki, Briana must be also so stressed and tired with it all, which we all know isn’t good for baby or mum. Vicky is selfish right down to the core.

  5. If D’Icki has a shred of sense, she won’t show her face out of the house. 20/20 made her look like the world’s biggest, craziest and loudest fool — basically humiliating the basic shit out of her. Say “bye bye” to any new business for a l o n g time, stupid. Wonder how her folly affects Donn’s settlement (since nothing has been finalized)?Boy, would I love to be toasting w/Donn!

    To OC: If you see a woman in the grocery store wearing a paperbag over her head, it’s probably D’Icki.

    • Vicki is complaining on the show about Don wanting spousal support, but didn’t he help support her kids?? She didn’t move to California and instantly have her own business. That takes years to build up.

  6. Brianna and Mike. They have my sympathy. I couldn’t care less if Vicki is embarrassed, hiding her head in shame. Apparently bravo is sick of her too. They had to approve the clips shown on 20/20, didn’t they?

  7. She CANNOT still be with this moron can she be??? Please say it isn’t so for her grandsons sake. On the other hand her crazy mind probably knows that 20/20 exposing her stupidity doesn’t bode well for her meeting a real gentleman to date……ever. So she will keep Crooks instead of be alone. ughhh gross! I pity Vickie.

  8. Somethings up cuz Brooks has changed his Twitter photo. It was a photo of him and Vicky, now it’s a photo of him holding a young child! I bet Vicky asked him to change it. Still no new tweets since June 29.

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