Entries in Miss USA (8)


Miss USA, Olivia Culpo, Crowned Miss Universe

Isaac Brekken/Getty Images(LAS VEGAS) -- Miss USA, Olivia Culpo, has been crowned the new Miss Universe.

The 20-year-old from Rhode Island beat out 88 contestants Wednesday night to take the title.  She took the crown from incumbent Leila Lopez of Angola.

The event took place at Planet Hollywood casino in Las Vegas and aired on NBC with hosts Guiliana Rancic and Andy Cohen.  It was the 61st time the pageant has been staged.

Culpo, a sophomore at Boston University, wore purple and blue for the bikini round and answered questions in a red velvet gown.  When quizzed about her regrets, she said she wished that she hadn’t picked on her siblings.

Miss Philippines Janine Tugonon came in second, while Miss Venezuela Irene Sofia Esser Quintero placed third.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Donald Trump Scores $5 Million Victory in Miss USA Lawsuit

Mike Stobe/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Donald Trump has logged a legal victory against Miss USA hopeful Sheena Monnin, who claimed the pageant was "fixed."

Trump filed suit against Monnin on behalf of the Miss Universe Organization after she blasted the competition on the Today show.   

The New York Post reports that late last week, retired U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Theodore H. Katz agreed with Trump that Monnin defamed the organization -- and awarded it $5 million in damages.

"While I feel very badly for Sheena, she did the wrong thing," Trump told the paper.  "She was really nasty, and we had no choice.  It is an expensive lesson for her."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Miss USA Faces More Allegations of Pageant Rigging

Brekken/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Miss USA 2012 Oliva Culpo may be carrying a cool demeanor beneath her pageant crown but the allegations over whether she won the title fair and square are as heated as ever.

Less than two weeks after one of the 50 women who lost to Culpo, Miss Pennsylvania Sheena Monnin, resigned her title and charged that the pageant was a “fraud,” a second contestant has come forward to back Monnin’s claims that the pageant’s finalists were selected in advance.

The contestant, who is remaining anonymous, told FOX News that she too heard Miss Florida Karina Brez reveal the list of finalists backstage before the top 15 finalists were announced on stage, the same allegation made by Monnin in a Facebook post the day after the June 3 pageant.

The Donald Trump-owned Miss Universe Organization that runs the Miss USA pageant has filed legal action against Monnin for defamation and says the new claims made by the anonymous contestant are just as false.

“We’re relying on the facts and the facts are on our side,” Paula Shugart, the president of the Miss Universe Organization, told ABC News Thursday.  “I don’t put a lot of credibility in anonymous sources.”

“The first thing I say when the contestants show up is 50 of you are going to be unhappy so make sure you have a great experience,” Shugart said.

The organization has vigorously fought back against Monnin’s claims in the media, unleashing both Trump, who called Monnin a “sore loser,” and the pageant winner, Culpo, who said her former competitor was exhibiting “a silly little piece of poor sportsmanship,” to dispute the former beauty queen.

The one person the public has not heard from is Miss Florida herself who has only issued a statement denying she saw the list.  Brez was scheduled to appear alongside Culpo, the former Miss Rhode Island, on Good Morning America but backed out at the last minute.

“Not at all,” Shugart said when asked if the organization was restricting Brez’s appearances.  “She is the only person in this whole thing that said she saw anything and she has said what she saw did not have the five on it.  She wants this all to go away as much as everybody else.”

Shugart confirmed reports that lawyers for the Miss Universe Organization have been interviewing each contestant.  She echoed claims made by Culpo, however, that the only list that anyone could have seen would have been one of the lists used in the pageant’s many rehearsals before the live televised show.

“The bottom line of this whole thing is it’s impossible,” Shugart said. “I don’t even know who the top five is. I sat in the audience and guessed and I was wrong.  It happens in a matter of minutes.”

For its part, Ernst & Young, the accounting firm that tabulates the pageant results, issued a statement Thursday defending its work with the pageant.

“Ernst & Young tabulated the list of the top ten Miss USA finalists after the swimsuit competition was completed and then tabulated the list of the final five Miss USA finalists after the evening gown competition was completed,” the statement read.  “Therefore, neither the Miss Universe Organization, Donald Trump, NBC, the eight celebrity judges, nor any of the contestants could have known who the final five Miss USA finalists were before the evening gown competition was completed and the tabulation was verified by Ernst & Young during the live broadcast.”

Of the eight celebrity judges, who included everyone from Rob Kardashian to former Bachelorette Ali Fedotowsky, two have come forward since the allegations were first made to say they were the ones who chose Culpo as Miss USA.

“All I can say … Is the Miss USA competition was NOT rigged. Miss (Rhode Island) USA won fair and square,” Joe Jonas tweeted.

“I can assure #MissPennsylvania 4 of my 5 top picks for #MissUSA were in the final 5. No cheating. Sorry you didn’t make it. And I remember!” fellow judge Marilu Henner wrote on her own Twitter page.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Second Miss USA Contestant Claims Pageant Was Rigged

Isaac Brekken/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Donald Trump is facing more allegations that his Miss USA pageant, held in Las Vegas earlier this month, was rigged.

His Miss Universe Organization, which runs the pageant, is suing former Miss Pennsylvania USA Sheena Monnin after she claimed on Facebook that a fellow contestant said she'd learned of the pageant's top five ahead of the show. Trump has denied Monnin's allegations.

Now, a second contestant is making similar claims. The contestant, who spoke on condition of anonymity to, says she saw Miss Florida USA Karina Brez backstage during the pageant, and that Brez "was able to reveal to me at least four of the five names who went on to be the top girls."

Olivia Culpo of Rhode Island was crowned the new Miss USA.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Miss USA Contestant Claims Pageant Was Fixed

Isaac Brekken/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- One of the contestants in the Miss USA pageant, which was held this past Sunday in Las Vegas, claims that the event was fixed.

Earlier this week, Miss Pennsylvania USA Sheena Monnin announced on Facebook that she was giving up her crown, claiming the Miss Universe Organization, which runs the Miss USA pageant, is "fraudulent, lacking in morals, inconsistent, and in many ways trashy."

Monnin reportedly has since published another Facebook post in which she alleges she "witnessed another contestant who said she saw the list of the Top 5 BEFORE THE SHOW EVER STARTED proceed to call out in order who the Top 5 were before they were announced on stage."

Monnin also writes, "After it was indeed the Top 5 I knew the show must be rigged; I decided at that moment to distance myself from an organization who did not allow fair play and whose morals did not match my own."

The Miss Universe Organization tells E! News in a statement that Monnin resigned due to her objection over the inclusion of a transgender woman in the Miss Universe Canada pageant.

The statement continues, "She has changed her story by publicly making false accusations claiming that the pageant was fixed, however the contestant she privately sourced as her reference has vehemently refuted her most recent claim."

Miss Rhode Island Olivia Culpo was crowned the winner of the Miss USA pageant.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Rhode Island Native Wins Miss USA Pageant

Isaac Brekken/Getty Images(LAS VEGAS) -- Olivia Culpo, a 20-year-old, self-professed cellist, model and nerd from Rhode Island, won the Miss USA pageant in Las Vegas on Sunday night.

She triumphed over representatives of the other 49 U.S. states as well as Washington, D.C.

Culpo succeeds Alyssa Campanella of California as Miss USA.  She will represent the U.S. in the Miss Universe pageant in December.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Former Miss USA Arrested on Drunk Driving Charges

David Becker/FilmMagic(HIGHLAND PARK, Mich.) -- Rima Fakih, who earned the title of Miss USA in 2010, is now facing drunk driving charges after being arrested over the weekend in Highland Park, Michigan, according to

Fakih at first denied the arrest on her Twitter page. She tweeted on Saturday, "Let's clear things up now.  I'm NOT in Michigan and I'm NOT in jail! Wrong Fakih."

But on Sunday, her attorney Doraid Elder confirmed the arrest, and the post was deleted.  Elder told People that Fakih's record "has not a single blemish," adding that Fakih is "very saddened and very apologetic for the situation that she's in right now."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Miss California USA Wins Miss USA Pageant

Denise Truscello/WireImage(LAS VEGAS) -- Miss California USA Alyssa Campanella won the Miss USA pageant in Las Vegas Sunday night.

The 21-year-old redheaded beauty from Los Angeles received the crown over close friend and runner-up, Miss Tennessee USA Ashley Durham.  A total of 51 contestants competed for the crown, including a representative from Washington, D.C.

Campanella succeeds Miss USA 2010 Rima Fakih.  She will compete in the Miss Universe pageant in Brazil this September.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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