Miss Pennsylvania Sheena Monnin might not have won the 2012 Miss USA pageant Sunday night, but on Wednesday her name exploded onto headlines when she claimed that the competition was fixed.
Sheena Monnin announced her resignation from the Miss Universe Organization, stating: Effective immediately I have voluntarily, completely, and utterly removed myself from the Miss Universe Organization. In good conscience I can no longer be affiliated in any way with an organization I consider to be fraudulent, lacking in morals, inconsistent, and in many ways trashy. I do not support this system in any way. In my heart I believe in honesty, fair play, a fair opportunity, and high moral integrity, none of which in my opinion are part of this pageant system any longer.
After being pressed for more information, Miss Pennsylvania asserted that fraud was behind her resignation. Monnin claims that a fellow Miss USA contestant saw a list of the top five final contestants before the pageant even aired on June 3.
Here are six things to know about Sheena Monnin and her resignation as Miss Pennsylvania 2012.
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Sheena Monnin, Repeat Beauty Queen
Sheena Monnin is a 27-year-old from Cranberry Township. She holds a bachelor's degree in human service and a master's degree in psychology from the University of Phoenix. The beauty queen has held titles in Florida, Texas and Pennsylvania, from 2003 through 2012, according to Pageant Update. Only in 2010 and 2011, however, did she make it as a finalist. The Miss Universe Organization's rules state that a delegate can compete more than once at the state level but only once in Miss Universe and Miss USA. Therefore, Monnin cannot compete for the Miss USA title ever again.
Allegations of Fraud
On Tuesday night, the former Miss Pennsylvania posted on her Facebook page that she decided to resign from her position because of fraud she observed during the 2012 Miss USA competition.
I agree that it is my moral obligation to state what I witnessed and what I know to be true. I will relay to you the reasoning behind my resignation. I 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 posted on her Facebook page. Apparently the morning of June 3rd she saw a folder lying open to a page that said 'FINAL SHOW Telecast, June 3, 2012′ and she saw the places for Top 5 already filled in. Thinking she was just seeing a rehearsal fake top 5 from a previous day she walked away, then realized that it had without a doubt been labeled as the Final Show Telecast, June 3rd.
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. That is all I know about this. If this contestant would like to step forward as an eye witness and as being the one who saw the sheet with the Top 5 already selected before the judges ever saw the Top 16, then perhaps action can be taken. As for me, I believe her words and I will not encourage anyone to compete in a system that in my opinion and from what I witnessed is dishonest.
When the media learned of Monnin's allegations, the Miss Universe Organization stated that she had offered a different reason just one night before.
In a statement sent to the Miss Universe Organization on Monday, Monnin cited the organization's acceptance of transgender contestants as the reason behind her leaving. Transgender beauty queen Jenna Talackova, was granted permission to compete in the Miss Universe Canada pageant after a heated national debate.
I am officially and irrevocably resigning the title of Miss Pennsylvania USA 2012, wrote Monnin. I refuse to be part of a pageant system that has so far and so completely removed itself from its foundational principles as to allow and support natural born males to compete in it. This goes against ever moral fiber of my being. I believe in integrity, high moral character, and fair play, none of which are part of this system any longer.
Sheena Monnin is described as deeply religious and conservative. She hopes to one day earn a doctorate in theology and quotes John 3:16 on her Facebook page. Her cover photo is of sun rays shining through a gathering of clouds, often used in religious imagery.
Her Facebook supporters have made many references to God and Scripture when offering Monnin encouragement.
Thank you for accepting my request. I am so PROUD of you for standing up for what you BELIEVE in. It's obvious that you have Morals. MAY GOD BLESS YOU..♥:):) wrote user Veronica Puanani.
The beauty you have inside and out, renews my faith in life. Too many people are scared to speak the truth. Your convictions honor and morals warm my heart. Phil 3:19 is how I live my life, wrote user Scott Kangaroo.
Olivia Culpo, who won the Miss USA 2012 title, made headlines Monday morning after answering the polarizing question: Would you feel it would be fair that a transgender woman wins the Miss USA title over a natural-born woman?
I do think that that would be fair, but I can understand that people would be a little apprehensive to take that road because there is a tradition of natural-born women, but today where there are so many surgeries and so many people out there who have a need to change for a happier life, I do accept that because I believe it's a free country, Culpo responded, and the crowd went wild.
Donald Trump Vows to Sue
She made a very false charge and she knows it was a false charge, Trump said Wednesday on Good Morning America. I think that, frankly, she should apologize but we will be bringing a lawsuit against her.
It's absolutely ridiculous, Trump added. She lost and if you look at her compared to the people who were in the top 15, you would understand why she's not in the top 15. It's a very, very sad situation.
My people said that they've already interviewed that person and that person said it's not true, the business mogul continued. Ernst & Young is one of the great, respected accounting firms. They do the tabulation. It's not like we care who the final contestants are. You take the 16 and you go down to 10 to five and then you have a winner and then it's all tabulated. The judges are all celebrities and they make their pick and that's the end of it.
Shortly after Trump's vowed to sue the former Miss Pennsylvania, she posted on her Facebook page: At this time I am considering which media outlet to give my first interview. Thank you for your encouragement, support, and kind words.
A Case of Sour Grapes?
Those involved in the 2012 Miss USA pageant think Sheena Monnin's backlash spurs from her not making it far in this year's competition.
Donald Trump believes that Sheena Monnin's decision to resign was based solely on the fact that she did not win. I don't think that she had an issue with that, he said regarding the pageant's new transgender policy. I think her primary issue was that she lost and she's angry about losing and, frankly, in my opinion, I saw her for barely a second, she didn't deserve to be in the top 15.
The Miss Universe Organization voiced disappointment over Monnin's attempt to steal the spotlight from Olivia Culpo on her well-deserved win.
It's a case of sour grapes to the nth degree, Paula Shugart, president of the Miss Universe Organization, told RTTNews on Tuesday. I think it's because she didn't make the Top 16, and it doesn't surprise me. If you could have seen her behavior here, you'd understand.
Adding, It's ludicrous, she changed her story. Anyone can check with our judges or our accountants Ernst & Young [for results].