(WJTV) — Charges are dropped against a former Miss Mississippi winner. Melinda King Sanders is telling her side of the story.
“I was arrested at my place of employment for credit card fraud that stemmed from some accusations from my father-in-law,” she said.
Sander said her family has been going through a difficult situation as it is. The negative attention stemming from what she calls a confusing arrest only made it worse.
“I am in the process of wrapping up the divorce from my soon to be ex-husband, and we have also had a domestic issue that occurred in December, and so this comes at a very awkward time for my family what should’ve been a very private situation has become very public,” said Sanders.
The pageant contestant is no stranger to being in the public eye, but never like this. Sanders was accused of using her father-in-law’s credit card to make unlawful charges. She says the card was used while she was still married, and that her father in law gave them access to it.
“The bottom line was we worked as a family at that time I was living with his son, and we were married, and families help each other out quite often, and that’s what this resulted from.”
Sanders was crowned Miss Mississippi in 1998. She says the arrest has created unnecessary stress and havoc for her family.
“I did lose my job as a result that has been one of the most upsetting things because now I’m a single mom with two young daughters it is a challenge,” she said. “I’m an educator, and I work with children who have learning difficulties and differences and sell here at the end of the school year it has been a little bit of a challenge to find the right place for me.”
Sanders says she was most upset by the way her family, and the Miss Mississippi Pageant were portrayed. She’s also upset that her students had to be dragged into this. However, she says she is determined to keep going, hopefully inspiring others in the process.
“I think it’s just been a lesson for me and for others hopefully to understand that rushing to judge too quickly and not understanding the full scope of the situation can be very damaging,” she said.
Sanders says she was given no choice but to resign or be fired. The case was dismissed last Wednesday in municipal court.