They heard the roar from the street outside at the moment Britney Spears won her legal fight in a Los Angeles courtroom
It was a moment of release for a Free Britney campaign which has spent years rallying in support of the singer’s cause, and in opposition to the conservatorship that has run her life for 13 years.
The police even closed the main road outside of the courthouse so hundreds could march in their latest show of noisy support and to call for accountability.
For so long Britney’s father Jamie has been a villain in the eyes of the campaign and the confirmation of his removal as conservator was a victory for them as much as the star herself.
As she posted a photo of herself at the controls of a small plane – “on cloud nine” she wrote – there was a dizzy jubilation outside of the Los Angeles Superior Court.
Her newly-appointed lawyer Mathew Rosengart, a man used to dealing with Hollywood celebrities, was mobbed like a rock star by Britney fans as he talked to reporters about the significance of the ruling.
He told Sky News: “It’s a monumental day for Britney, it’s a monumental step towards justice.”
In court he made the case for the suspension because of what he called her father’s “toxic, untenable presence” in his daughter’s life. Britney should not wake up tomorrow, he argued, with her father still as conservator.
Jamie Spears’s lawyer Vivian Thoreen requested an immediate termination of the conservatorship and talks over a settlement between father and daughter. Rosengart said that was an attempt to dodge any investigation into Britney’s treatment over the years.
It was, at times, contentious and bad tempered.
Allegations contained in the documentary “Controlling Britney Spears” released this week, that her communications had been monitored and recorded, Rosengart said, were “shocking” and “unfathomable”. Thoreen dismissed them as non-evidence brought to light by a TV show.
Ruling Mr Spears should be suspended, Judge Brenda Penny said: “It’s in Ms Spears’ best interests.”
The case has thrown a spotlight on the wider issue of conservatorships and the estimated 1.3 million people who are subject to them in the US. Pressure for a change in the law continues to grow.
The Britney Spears conservatorship will rumble on for a few weeks more, and lawyers will be poring over the files from the last 13 years which Jamie Spears must hand over, probably ensuring some lengthy legal wrangles ahead, but this was the freedom Britney had sought.
Heaven Casey, who described herself as a friend from Britney’s past, said: “I bet you she feels liberated, there’s going to be a lot of crying, it’s like the five stages of grief that she’s going to be going through because now that her father is finally out of her life she is able to finally be free.”