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The drama between social media influencers James Charles and Tati Westbrook just got more complicated.
Charles and Westbrook have been embroiled in a feud, which stemmed from Charles promoting one of Westbrook’s competitors in April.
Things blew up on Friday after Westbrook posted a 43-minute video claiming that Charles, 19, had sexually manipulated men while they were “still emerging into adulthood,” and that he had also spread lies about her and betrayed her after she spent years helping him with his brand.
On Tuesday, Charles’ pal, Nikita Dragun, went to bat for the beauty influencer, sharing screenshots of text conversations between the two, which she hoped would show that Charles had not intentionally promoted Westbrook’s rival.
The messages appear to show Charles asking Dragun for help getting artist credentials for Coachella from SugarBearHair, so that he could escape getting “attacked” in the VIP area.
According to the screenshots, the company agreed and Dragun connected her contact with Charles.
heard a situation needed some clarification 👀 my friend was in an emergency and texted me in the moment... unfortunately since @dragunbeauty used all of our marketing budget on the 𝓯𝓪𝓷𝓽𝓪𝓼𝔂, i connected him with sugar bear. nothing shady. pic.twitter.com/fNNtMReApm
However, after Dragun made the text conversations public, YouTube channel Tea Spill pointed out that the discussions didn’t correlate with their own conversations with Charles about Coachella.
“Alright so... James texted Nikita asking if she could get him a SBH sponsorship but he told me that he was being mobbed and sugar bear reached out to HIM.. sister lied to me ?,” Tea Spill tweeted, along with a screenshot of a text message allegedly sent to Tea Spill from Charles in which he states that SugarBearHair heard he was being mobbed in the VIP area and reached out to offer him an artist pass.
Tea Spill reportedly shared another screenshot in which Charles explained how SugarBearHair asked him to post an Instagram Story about their sleep vitamins (the product competing with Westbrook) in order to secure the passes he needed.
However, followers of the drama questioned the timestamps of the text messages, and whether they supported Charles’ side of the story.
Getting a response in under 2 minutes from a rep regarding a spare pass... And let’s not forget the fact that he had the pass on that morning in his snaps... I smell something funky
Meanwhile, Westbrook posted a lengthy comment on Instagram, explaining that she had spoken publicly against Charles in pursuit of “change and healing,” not out of hate.
“If the roles were reversed and it was a famous straight guy using his power to emotionally manipulate young vulnerable women into bed and when they declined, took to Twitter to publicly shame them, everyone would be freaked,” she wrote in response to a user asking why she was “trying to ruin” Charles. “There shouldn’t be a double standard.”
“I’m speaking up for those who are too afraid to look uncool because they need boundaries when it comes to people commenting on their sexuality and physical self,” Westbrook continued. “I understand the gravity of these topics because of my age, wisdom gained through life experience and the sexual assault that’s a part of my history. This is not the way people should be treating each other.”