Miss Delaware loses crown for being a few months too old

Fri Jun 27, 2014 7:35pm EDT
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By Dave Warner

(Reuters) - A beauty contest winner, stripped of her crown as Miss Delaware due to age, said on Friday she had done nothing wrong and wants to be allowed to compete in the Miss America pageant even though she will turn 25 this year.

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 vote-count error.

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 Wilmington.

"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."   Continued...