A dethroned Texas beauty queen suing for a shot at Miss America began her trial by listening as her former pageant handler told jurors the size-2 teen gained enough weight to ruin a bikini photo shoot and failed to follow through on obligations.
Domonique Ramirez could respond on the witness stand as early as Friday when testimony resumes in her trial _ the 17-year-old's last shot at reclaiming her Miss San Antonio sash as the drama practically made for Texas continues to play out.
Ramirez claims pageant organizers ousted her in January, after she was harassed about her weight and told to "get off the tacos." Ramirez wants her crown restored so she can compete for Miss Texas, and if she wins there, Miss America.
The head of the Miss San Antonio pageant told jurors Thursday that Ramirez was no beauty queen when it came to her actions.
Linda Woods, president of the Miss Bexar County Organization, testified that Ramirez gained enough weight that publicity photos of the teenager in a bikini were rendered "unusable." The photos were taken, Woods said, because the bikini competition in the Miss San Antonio pageant propelled Ramirez to the title in the first place.
Woods, however, said it wasn't adding a few inches to her figure that cost the 5-foot-8, 129-pound college student her crown.
"Domonique is not fat by any stretch of the imagination. She's a beautiful girl," Woods testified.
She said the teen violated her contract by being chronically late for events or not showing up altogether, not writing thank-you notes for gifts, and embarrassing the pageant board by turning down vocal coaching from an opera singer who Woods said has performed with Luciano Pavarotti.
Ramirez also modeled in a wedding dress without permission, and Woods said the pageant felt that wasn't the right image for a 17-year-old to project.
Former pageant executive director Glynda Coyle said she suggested only once that Ramirez lose weight.
"The only thing I suggested to her, is that she might want to try to lose an inch in her hip," she said, "but because she is who she is, I said we can pad the top part to make you more symmetrical."
Ashley Dixon, who was runner-up to Ramirez, was crowned Miss San Antonio last month after a judge refused Ramirez's efforts to obtain a temporary injunction stopping the pageant from naming a new winner.