SAN ANTONIO — The bikini fit, and she never swelled to a size 6.
That's what a Texas beauty queen suing to regain her title told jurors Friday, rejecting claims by Miss San Antonio officials that the teenager slipped out of shape and arrived at a bikini shoot with 40-inch hips. Domonique Ramirez testified she was never that big before the pageant stripped her title in January.
Ramirez is asking a jury to restore her crown and her shot at Miss America. The 17-year-old took the witness stand a day after the pageant's president testified that bikini photos of Ramirez were so "unusable" that not even photo-editing software could slim down the publicity pictures.
"I won the swimsuit (competition)," Ramirez said of her Miss San Antonio victory in April. "So obviously I was good enough."
But pageant officials say Ramirez didn't lose her sash over measurements. Instead, they said the teenager was too unreliable, chronically showing up late for events such as grocery store openings, and violated her contract in ways ranging from not writing thank-you notes to blowing off her physical fitness program.
Ramirez, taking the witness stand in a conservative pink sweater and her hair pulled back in a simple pony tail, denied those claims. She told jurors about graduating high school early and her job bussing tables at a cafeteria chain. At one point during her testimony, she stood up to demonstrate how measurements are taken.
She said she never embarrassed the pageant by thumbing her nose at a prominent vocal coach, and during one strange line of questioning, she denied secretly being a 17-year-old bride.
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Lorena Briseno, Ramirez's mother, testified earlier that her daughter was fired two days after choosing to model wedding dresses at a bridal show instead of appearing in her crown and sash. That angered pageant leaders, Briseno said, because they felt a minor wearing a wedding gown sent an inappropriate message.
Briseno also said her daughter wasn't married — a topic that came up when pageant attorney Ben Wallis asked her about pictures on her daughter's Facebook page. Wallis also told Briseno he may call a witness to testify they saw Ramirez once change her relationship status to "married."
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Ramirez later denied being married, shaking her head and smiling. The 5-foot-8, 129-pound teen then emphasized that she had always been a size 2.
"I think I've actually gotten a little bit taller," she said.
When measured and weighed by the pageant director weeks before being fired, Ramirez said, no comments were made about her size.
"She just measured me and said, 'OK," Ramirez said.
Ramirez has said that other pageant officials told her to "get off the tacos." Her testimony is expected to continue Monday.
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