As the vote counting error was clarified, Christina Silva was stripped of her Miss California crown which was instead awarded to Raquel Beezley, organizers said Monday.
24-year-old Christina Silva was initially named Miss California a week ago but she was forced to relinquish the title to the second runner-up after organizers discovered an apparent accounting error that led to a shape up in the order, Keith Lewis, the pageant’s state director said.
The one who will be representing California at the Miss USA pageant in April next year is 21-year-old Raquel Beezley.
Lewis explained that several judges questioned the results the following day and the error was discovered after the ballots were opened and recounted, "It was a simple human error," he said.
The contestants were scored by five celebrity judges who independently ranked them. The mix-up occurred when the points were reversed, with the lowest point given to the winner and the highest to the fourth runner-up, Lewis said.
However, Silva, who was forced to step down, has hired an attorney and is currently looking into her legal options.
"I don't want the title. I want the truth," Silva, who was told she can keep the tiara and the sash, was quoted by ABC as saying.
Speaking exclusively to ABC’s "Good Morning America," Silva recalled the joy of winning and how she was announced for days later that she had to give up the title.
"Within 10 minutes he just said, 'I don't know how to say this to you but you are not the winner. Miss [Raquel] Beazley, the second runner-up, is the winner, and there was an accounting error,'" Silva said about the moment when Lewis broke the news to her.
"All he kept saying is, 'Christina, you can continue wearing the crown and the sash and go on to Miss USA, but if this leaks your integrity and your acting career could be jeopardized. And we know you're faith-based and a woman of integrity and we know you're going to do the right thing, right?'" she added.
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