Four former Miss Teen USA contestants claim Donald Trump walked into their dressing room as they changed clothes for the beauty pageant in 1997. Some of the contestants were as young as 15.
“I remember putting on my dress really quick because I was like, ‘Oh my god, there’s a man in here,’” former Miss Vermont Teen USA Mariah Billado told BuzzFeed.
Billado recalls Trump said something like, “Don’t worry, ladies, I’ve seen it all before.”
The other three women who came forward have chosen to remain anonymous because they don’t want to become a part of the current scandal surrounding Trump in the media. They, too, recalled Trump walking into the dressing room. Two of them said the girls quickly covered up. One called it “shocking” and “creepy” that Trump would walk in. The third woman — who was clothed at the time — said she introduced herself to the real estate mogul who owned the pageant.
One former contestant said when Trump announced his run for president, she thought, “Oh, gross, this guy walked in on us in the pageant.” Girls were “just scrambling to grab stuff,” she added, “whatever garments they had.”
BuzzFeed reports the topic came up among the former beauty queens in a private Facebook group.
Some of the women doubted it could have happened, while others don’t recall it happening.
“There were so many chaperones, I can’t even fathom” Trump doing so, said Jessica Granata, a former Miss Massachusetts Teen USA. “It was very secure.”
Trump owned the Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageants for nearly 20 years. In the past, he has bragged about entering dressing rooms, saying it was something he could do as a pageant owner.
“I’ll tell you the funniest is that I’ll go backstage before a show and everyone’s getting dressed,” Trump once told Howard Stern. “No men are anywhere, and I’m allowed to go in, because I’m the owner of the pageant, and therefore I’m inspecting it.”
The Miss Teen USA allegations are the first reports of Trump entering the teenage pageant’s dressing room.
The Trump campaign has not commented on the claims.