Miss Virginia Nikki Poteet says accusations of the homophobic attack are "inconsistent" with her character and reputation, in a statement to WTVR, Richmond, Virginia's CBS affiliate.
Poteet has been accused of an attack on her gay roommate Derek Powell, and his friends, that had Poteet using homophobic slurs and destroying furniture. She released the following statement:
"It is unfortunate that, during my last days as Miss Virginia USA, individuals would make these accusations against me, as I currently, and will continue to, show respect and support for diversity throughout the Commonwealth. Those that know me will agree that these accusations are inconsistent with my character and the reputation that I have built thus far, not only as Miss Virginia USA, but as an educated, hard-working, independent woman."
Website ThinkProgress, which broke the story, has obtained the following correspondence between one of the men involved in the incident, Chris Clayton, and a representative from the Miss Virginia Pageant.
Miss Virginia Pageant: "We take those accusations seriously and have looked into this. Sadly, the claims are here say and unsubstantiated and therefore the article should never have been published. Nikki has been a terrific titleholder and has made many appearances across the state and beyond during her year of service. We have only received praise and good press from many people and organizations, as she has worked diligently as Miss Virginia USA 2011 and we will miss her greatly."
Cayton: "I was there to witness her actions Saturday night and was one of the ones she actually put her hands on and called a 'faggot.' The text message in the article is from her cell phone number and she has yet to apologize for any wrong doing."
Miss Virginia Pageant: "I have heard Nikki's side and I read your message. I imagine those that agree with you are your friends and it is a your group against Nikki and Aaron. So, since I was not present, I cannot make a judgment. I do not agree with slurs or violence and we of course take such accusations seriously. I am gay and I love Nikki and I firmly believe she is not homophobic. I am aware that she has not gotten along with her roommates for many months, so I question the motives of whoever sent the story to be published. It appears rather vindictive and serves no good purpose.