Melissa King, the one-time Miss Delaware Teen USA who gave up her title after an explicit online video featuring her was discovered, was placed on probation for one year on Monday. The probation was a result of underage possession of alcohol, not the explicit video.
At 19 years old, King faced Worcester County District Court in Ocean City, Maryland for the alcohol violation and a separate theft accusation. In August, King was charged when officers discovered a bottle of rum in her father’s truck that she was driving home from work.
Two months prior to this, King had faced a theft charge for allegedly taking money from a city bus fare box, but the prosecution dismissed this charge on Monday. King, who has had her share of challenges, resigned from her pageant title in February when the explicit video emerged online, though she refuted her involvement in the explicit video.
As she entered the courtroom, she greeted the press with a smile, accompanied by her lawyer, Greg Hannigan, and a friend, and expressed that she’s been “doing well.” King chose not to comment on the explicit video. She was granted one year of unsupervised probation for the alcohol violation, and her friend, Dave Stout, paid a $140 fine to cover court costs.
Hannigan expressed that King was “grateful” to put the matter behind her. She has allegedly been accepted into a college and intends to work at a place on the Eastern Shore of Maryland before heading off to college in the fall. Hannigan did not disclose the location of King’s intended college, only mentioning that it was to the west of the Mississippi River, an obvious attempt at a new beginning.
Unveiling the Understated Lore of Top Chef’s Melissa King
Melissa King, a culinary dynamo, has made a name for herself in the field of gourmet cuisine. Her claim to fame is her victorious stint on “Top Chef All Stars,” where her culinary prowess was so awe-inspiring that it moved the judges to tears. Born to a Cantonese mother and a Shanghainese father in Los Angeles, King’s culinary artistry displays her rich and diverse heritage, seamlessly fusing modern Californian cuisine with Asian influences.
Her list of accolades is extensive, including holding the distinction of being a level 1 sommelier and being named “one of the best female chefs in San Francisco” and a “40 under 40 Rising Star.” But her accomplishments extend beyond the kitchen. Discover more hidden facets about this Chinese-American chef as we delve deeper into her life.
Melissa King: An Introvert in the Limelight
Despite her public persona on “Top Chef,” King is more reserved off-screen. She shared with Food & Wine about her struggle with shyness throughout her life. However, her participation in Top Chef, first in Season 12 and later in Season 17, has immensely contributed to her growth as a person, boosting her self-confidence along the way.
Philanthropy: The Core of King’s Top Chef Triumph
Melissa King’s Top Chef Season 17 victory came with the double honour of being named the Fan Favorite, bagging a prize money of $10,000. In an act of selfless generosity, King donated the entire amount to support causes she holds dear, namely Black, LGBTQ+, and Asian American communities.
As a queer, Chinese American, her win on “Top Chef” resonated with many in the LGBTQ+ and Asian American communities, with some even expressing that she inspired them to come out to their friends and family. King firmly believes that her Top Chef journey has given her more than just a spotlight for her culinary skills, but also a platform to use her voice for those who can’t.
Her philanthropic endeavours don’t stop there. In June 2020, she launched a line of hats and face masks on her website, with a slice of the profits going to The Trevor Project, a charity focused on assisting LGBTQ+ youth in crisis, in celebration of Pride Month. In collaboration with Korean designer Sunjin Kim, she also designed an “I AM HUMAN” t-shirt, and all proceeds went to support Stop AAPI Hate.
Notable Chef Melissa King Unveils Unique Ice Cream Flavors
Melissa King, a renowned chef, has expanded her culinary prowess by introducing her own line of ice cream flavors. In collaboration with the hip San Francisco ice cream firm, Humphrey Slocombe, King has developed a variety of exclusive products for the famous Whole Foods Market. Their initial creation, a flavor reminiscent of Hong Kong Milk Tea, was a tribute to King’s Chinese-American heritage and quickly became a favorite. King’s inventive flavors didn’t stop there; she also contributed to the creation of Almond Chocolate Crunch, a plant-based offering, and the summery Yuzu Cream, among others (via Chef Melissa King).
Melissa King’s Modelling Career with GAP and Levi Strauss
In addition to her culinary accomplishments, King also has a successful modeling career. She first appeared as a model in a global campaign for Levi Strauss Co., marking Levi’s fifth Pride anniversary. As a member of the 2018 Pride Cast, King stood alongside other prominent figures in the LGBTQ+ community, sharing her personal journey and advocating for authenticity. King was also featured in Gap’s “Generation Good” campaign, which celebrated those promoting inclusivity, diversity, and community values.
How King Stayed Active Amid the Pandemic
Despite the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, King remained productive. During the 2020 lockdown, she took her masterful culinary skills online by selling some of her popular sauces, many of which were featured on “Top Chef.” From Fish Sauce Caramel to the spicy Sichuan Chile Sauce, each handcrafted and personally shipped by King, these sauces sold out within minutes, demonstrating their popularity among the public.