Jurors Deliver Verdict In Rebekah Revels' Favor In Case Against Ex-Fiance
Posted March 25, 2004 4:18 a.m. EST
LUMBERTON, N.C. — The jury ruled that Rebekah Revels' ex-fiance was guilty of interfering with her contract with the Miss North Carolina pageant and a potential contract with the Miss America pageant.
The jury found Tosh Welch was not guilty of the other claim in the lawsuit -- intentional infliction of emotional distress. Earlier in the day, the judge dismissed claims of invasion of privacy and negligent affliction of emotional distress.
"Door closed. I'm elated right now," Revels said after the verdict.
Revels sued Welch, claiming an incident over topless photos has cost her the Miss North Carolina title and a shot at the Miss America crown.
Welch, who testified for nearly an hour, told jurors that he was not out to hurt Revels' career, but he wanted to tell the truth.
Welch admitted telling Miss America pageant officials that he had topless photos of Revels and that he and Revels lived together without being married -- a possible violation of pageant rules.
"For lack of a better term, we were just shacking up, living together in a one-bedroom apartment," he said.
Welch denied that he was being vindictive when he told officials about the topless photos.
"My intention was never for her to be disqualified. My intention was for them to pose a couple of questions to her," he said.
Revels said Wednesday that she was in a serious relationship with Welch.
"I said because we were in a relationship that was very serious, we had talked about being together the rest of our lives, being married and that is why I was comfortable taking my clothes off in front of him. We were that close," Revels said.
However, Revels said Welch took photos of her without her consent and described him as an ex-boyfriend who would not leave her alone. The jury will meet at 10 a.m. Friday to discuss possible compensatory and punitive damages.