“RuPaul’s Drag Race” Contestant Shannel Accused Of Stealing $700 From An Audience Member’s Purse

August 18, 2022 / Posted by:

Drag queen Shannel, best known for appearances on the first seasons of RuPaul’s Drag Race and RPDR All Stars, caught shit over a comedic bit where she “steals” tips from the audience. Audience member Megan Gerber has accused the queen of taking $700 out of her purse during a drag brunch performance in Vegas. Megan uploaded footage of the alleged theft to TikTok and so far it has 5 million views. The video shows Shannel rifling through Megan’s purse, fishing out some cash, and returning the purse to her table. Wow! Right in front of cameras and a packed house! To quote Drag Race UK’s Tayce, “The cheek, the nerve, the gall, the audacity, and the gumption” (IF SHANNEL IS GUILTY).

Here’s Megan’s TikTok:

@meggymomma

#dragbrunch #vegas #seniorfrogs #theft #cabtgetmoneyback

♬ original sound – Meggy Momma

Megan explained her version of events in another TikTok. She says that, later in the show, Shannel (civilian name: Bryan Watkins), noticed Megan was upset and asked her what was wrong from the stage. When Megan accused the queen of stealing hundreds of dollars, Shannel responded with, “Bitch, please, I took a dollar.” Megan says she left the performance early, reported the incident to the venue’s general manager, and then took it to the police. NBC News reports that the case has not yet been signed to a detective, but it will eventually be investigated. Here’s Megan’s vid:

@meggymomma

#dragbrunch #seniorfrogs #rreasureisland #lasvegas #theft #dragqueen

♬ original sound – Meggy Momma

Yesterday, Shannel posted an 11-minute apology video on Instagram. But the queen is sticking to the story that she only took a couple of bucks from Megan, and it was promptly returned, via NBC News:

“During my performance, I did pick up her purse, and I danced around with it for about 20 to 30 seconds or so. I opened it up. I took a couple of dollars out of it. I added it to the wad of singles that actually were already in my hand from having performed around the room,” Watkins said.

He ended the video by saying: “No, I did not steal $700 from her purse. Yes, I inappropriately picked up her purse, and I made comments to her that were in poor taste. Yes, I ruined her birthday experience, and I apologize for that. It was never my intention, and I feel horrible for that. So for these reasons, I really am sorry and refrain from ever doing a bit like this in my show again.”

A spokesperson for Voss Events, the company behind the drag brunch, says that Megan and her friends were offered a full refund of $1200, plus an additional $700, “despite the fact that it was never stolen.” The reps says they asked Megan to take down her TikToks because Shannel and their fellow performers are getting homophobic hate and death threats, but Megan refused and “insisted on $7,000 in compensation to remove the posts.”  HMMMMM. Here’s Shannel’s apology:

But this saga is not over yet. Megan once again took to TikTok, this time to respond to Shannel’s apology. Megan says she appreciates the apology, but “we’re gonna disagree on the amount.” She says she’s annoyed that Voss Events is saying she’s lying, and she doesn’t need their money (unless it’s that $7,000 to take down the TikToks):

I’m not starving on the street, thank God. But what if I was, and you took that wad of cash from my purse? What if this is happening to other people? This is not OK. If this is the standard in the drag show community, it’s not OK. It’s not OK to assume that someone wants to give you their money!

Here’s the TikTok:

@meggymomma

Response to Bryan Watkins #dragbrunch #vegas

♬ original sound – Meggy Momma

Now that I think of it… most people who are starving on the streets lost everything after getting robbed at drag brunches. It’s a dangerous trend, I tells ya! And Megan Gerber is here to hold these thieves accountable. God speed, cis white lady drag show audience member.

Pic: Instagram

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