Amanda Longacre said she learned on Tuesday that she had been
disqualified because the Miss Delaware pageant determined that
she had violated the age requirement. On NBC's "Today" show on
Friday, a tearful Longacre said she was consulting a lawyer.
Pageant rules require Miss Delaware contestants to be no older
than 24 and they cannot turn 25 before the end of the year.
Longacre's 25th birthday is Oct. 22.
In another upset, the winner of the 2014 Miss Florida pageant
was dethroned on Friday just a week after her coronation when
organizers said they had crowned the wrong woman after a
Pageant officials said Elizabeth Fechtel, a 20-year-old
University of Florida student, would have to turn over her tiara
to the true Miss Florida, 21-year-old Florida State University
student Victoria Cowen. (Full Story)
Delaware's Longacre said on Friday that she had been honest when
she turned in her pageant application, providing her birth
certificate, driver’s license and other documents.
"I did absolutely nothing wrong and I want to make that clear,"
Longacre said in an interview with the News Journal of
"Now I have lost everything, my scholarship money for school, my
prizes and my crown, all because of a technicality that was not
caught by the executive board."
[to top of second column]
Sam Haskell, chief executive and board chairman of the Miss America
pageant, said Longacre will get the $9,000 scholarship given to the
pageant winner, as will the new Miss Delaware.
“Because we’re a scholarship organization, because we want to be
benevolent and because our heart breaks for her, we’re going to give
her the $9,000," he said in an interview.
A resident of Bear, Delaware, Longacre won the title of Miss
Delaware on June 14. The winners of state pageants compete in
September to become Miss America.
Longacre was replaced this week by the first runner-up in the
pageant, Brittany Lewis, 23, of Wilmington, who was crowned at a
special ceremony on Thursday.
"It's like they're trying to erase me in a way like it never
happened," Longacre said on "Today."
"And it's not fair because I won outright and I deserve to represent
my state and I want the chance still to go to Miss America."
An attorney for the Miss Delaware pageant, Elizabeth Soucek, said
the pageant would have little comment because litigation could be
"All I can say is that there is an age requirement to be eligible to
compete in Miss America," Soucek said.
(Editing by Ellen Wulfhorst, Bill Trott and David Gregorio)
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.