25-year-old Caitlin Cifuentes, who won the title of Miss Corpus Christi Latina (Miss America Latina) in June has been disqualified and her crown taken from her after other contestants argued that she had been married previously and also had a criminal record. Six competitors, including the first runner-up, sued the pageant's director, Kayla Alvarez forcing the Miss America Latina organizers to drop Cifuentes as the winner.
Citing the contract all contestants signed before competing in the pageant, they argued that the 25-year-old winner's past disqualified her, although the Texas model Cifuentes rejected their claims.
According to the Houston Chronicle, Cifuentes is on deferred adjudicated probation for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and probation for a misdemeanor driving while intoxicated case.
After the lawsuit was filed, Acirema Alayeto, president and founder of Miss America Latina, announced Cifuentes would no longer be recognized as the winner. 'Cifuentes does not have the proper credentials to hold such a title,' Alayeto said in a statement.
In a post on Facebook, Cifuentes rejected the move to strip her of her crown and claimed she has being mistreated. 'I was discriminated against, slandered, judged in the harshest ways, but guess what?' she wrote. 'I am still the real winner. Keep that old title because I would rather not be involved with a program which allows bullying. That's not what I stand for.'
'I am the people's champ,' she added. 'I am the people's choice. I am a leader. I believe that people can make a mistake and move on from it. I am a leader for all women who have gone through tough times and did not feel like a beauty queen.'
Valeria Barrera, the first runner-up, has been given the title and will represent the coastal city in the state event.
Source: DailyMail UK