A “RuPaul’s Drag Race” alum has been accused of stealing money from a woman’s wallet during a “Drag Brunch” performance in Las Vegas.
A video posted to TikTok by Megan Gerber shows Shannel, former “Drag Race” entrant, whose real name is Bryan Watkins, taking money from a wallet while the audience watches. At the end of the video, which has been viewed more than 4 million times, Watkins puts down the wallet and walks away. Gerber claims the wallet is hers and about $700 was stolen.
Gerber did not respond to a request for comment.
In a series of TikTok videos, Gerber shared additional details about the incident, which took place on Saturday at the Mexican-themed bar and grill franchise Señor Frogs. Gerber claimed that Watkins, who was one of the brunch’s headliners, realized after the incident that Gerber was upset and asked her from the stage what was going on. When Gerber accused Watkins of stealing hundreds of dollars, Watkins replied, “B—please, I took a dollar,” Gerber claimed.
“There were tables next to us watching him take the money out of my wallet, and no one told him he was allowed in my wallet,” Gerber said in one of the videos. She claimed she subsequently apologized for the act and reported the incident to the general manager of the venue. Afterwards, she reported the incident to the police, she said.
The Las Vegas Police Department confirmed in an email that they had received Gerber’s theft report. A spokesman said the case has not yet been assigned to a detective, but that he or she “will be turned over to that agency or detective to follow up or investigate”.
On Wednesday, Watkins posted an 11-minute video to Instagram titled “In My Words,” an apology to Gerber and an explanation of the “comedy part” during the drag performance.
“During my performance, I grabbed her wallet and danced around with it for about 20 to 30 seconds. I opened it. I got a few bucks out of it. I added it to the pile of singles I actually already had in my hand after performing in the room,” Watkins said.
He ended the video by saying, “No, I didn’t steal $700 from her wallet. Yes, I inappropriately picked up her purse and made comments to her that were distasteful. Yes, I ruined her birthday experience, and for that I apologize. It was never my intention, and I think that’s terrible. So for these reasons I’m really sorry and will never abstain from this kind of thing on my show again.”
Watkins did not respond to a request for comment.
A spokesperson for Voss Events, the events agency behind the “Drag Brunch” show, said only $2 was taken from Gerber’s wallet and it was later returned to her.
“We have taken appropriate steps to ensure that this never happens again at any of our events and are appalled that this guest has ruined her experience due to this unfortunate incident,” the spokesperson said, adding that Gerber and her friends have received a full refund of $1,200 plus were offered. an additional $700, “despite the fact that it was never stolen.”
The spokesperson said the company had asked Gerber to take down her TikTok videos, claiming they incite hatred and threats against the drag artists, but Gerber declined, “pressing $7,000 in compensation to remove the messages. ”
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