A woman crowned Miss Miami Lakes is facing multiple charges after police say she was involved in an attack on a man during a drunken party at her Hialeah home.
Vanessa Lucille Barcelo, 26, was arrested Thursday on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated battery and battery, according to an arrest affidavit.
Barcelo was booked into jail and later bonded out. Her attorney, Josef Timlichman, said the allegations aren't even close to reality.
"Vanessa is a sweet, sweet individual, very caring individual, a non-violent individual who in the circumstances did what she felt was appropriate," Timlichman told NBC 6 by phone Thursday.
The arrest report said Barcelo, a Miss Florida USA 2017 contestant, was hosting a party for her cake business at her home when most of the guests, including Barcelo, became "very intoxicated."
At one point, Barcelo and an unidentified man told the victim, a man she knows, to leave the party. The victim was complying but Barcelo and the man were continuously pushing him down the stairs, the affidavit said.
The victim left the home but was accosted by Barcelo, who armed herself with an aluminum baseball bat, the report said. While they were outside, Barcelo swung the bat at the victim for no reason, hitting him on the shoulder/back, the report said.
A security guard responded and took away the bat but the unknown man snuck up on the victim and punched him in the face, causing him to collapse to the ground, the report said. Barcelo ran up and started to punch the victim in the face several times while he was on the ground, the affidavit said.
The victim was able to leave the scene and call 911. He was hospitalized after suffering severe damage to his left eye, the report said.
Barcelo denied hitting the victim while he was on the ground but was found with blood on her hands, the report said. The report said Barcelo was "very intoxicated" and refused to give the name of the man involved in the attack.
"We are confident that once all of the facts that occurred last night come to light, my client will be absolved of any criminal responsibility," Timlichman said. "We intend to fight these charges and prove that Vanessa is innocent of any wrong doing."
"While we cannot comment on the potential outcome of a case as it proceeds through the judicial system, specific morality clauses within each pageant delegate's description of duties would be taken into consideration upon a legal ruling," the Miss Florida USA Pageant said in a statement.