Ugly Lawsuit Doesn't Fit Beauty Queen

A woman crowned Miss California 2008, only to be stripped of her title four days later because of a mistake in tabulating votes, has asked that her case be dismissed.

Christina Silva filed suit last April 10 in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleging negligence, fraudulent concealment and misrepresentation, false advertising and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Silva, a Latina, also alleged a violation of her civil rights arising from the pageant's alleged decision that the contestant who should win the crown should not be of her race and ethnicity.

Silva's suit listed damages of at least $500,000 and also named as defendants Miss California USA, state pageant director Keith Lewis, K2 Productions, which produced the pageant, and Miss Universe LLP.

Raquel Beezley of Barstow eventually donned the tiara and sash that originally was awarded to the 24-year-old Silva, Miss Los Angeles USA, during the Nov. 25, 2007, pageant at the Orpheum Theater.

According to court records, Wilfredo Trivino-Perez, Silva's lawyer, on Jan. 14 requested dismissal of his client's case against Miss California USA and Miss Universe LLP only. He filed additional papers on Monday asking that the action apply to all defendants.

The papers do not state if the 25-year-old Silva is no longer pursuing the lawsuit because there was a settlement, or if she is doing so for other reasons. Attorneys in the case were not immediately available for comment.

Shortly after the mix-up, pageant officials denied allegations of impropriety or special treatment toward other contestants, insisting that a volunteer accountant erred while tabulating the votes during the pageant. Lewis said then the mistake was the result of misprinted ballots, and that the person responsible for the error quit.

Silva was allowed to keep the crown she received, her sash and a $4,500 Miss California USA necklace. The pageant also returned her $1,500 entry fee and said she could compete the next year for free.

Since the 2007 pageant, Silva has modeled and traveled to Africa, her lawyer, Trivino-Perez said previously.

After Beezley's reign ended, Pad Squad Carrie became her successor as Miss California 2009.

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