Wendy Williams Sparks Backlash for Segment on TikTok Star Swavy’s Death
By Paige Gawley
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Wendy Williams is facing criticism following her segment on a late teen. During the "Hot Topics" segment on Wednesday's episode of The Wendy Williams Show, the 56-year-old host brought up TikTok star Matima Miller, who was better known as Swavy. The teen was killed on Monday in Delaware, according to a press release from the Wilmington Police Department.
On her show, Williams began speaking about Swavy without mentioning his death. Instead, the host showed her viewers a photo of Swavy and said, "I have no idea who this is... neither does one person in this building."
She asked her live studio audience to clap if they knew who Swavy was, and was answered with only a smattering of applause. "He's a TikTok star," Williams explained. "He's got more followers than me -- 2.5 million!"
After her producer pointed out that Swavy only has more followers than Williams on TikTok, not Instagram, the host said, "Well, as my son Kevin would say, no one uses Instagram anymore. As far as TikTok, I don't use that at all. I don't know what that is. I don't want to be involved."
It was only after that when Williams told her audience that Swavy had been killed.
"So here he is. He's 19. He was murdered Monday morning," she said. "... Somebody's dead... Swavy is now dead. Aw. All those followers. That's really tragic. Only 19 years old."
ET has reached out to Williams for comment.
After the segment was posted online, tweets flew in, criticizing Williams for her demeanor during the segment, and for comparing the follower count between her and a now-dead teenager.
"THIS SHOULD'VE STAYED IN YOUR DRAFTS," one person tweeted, adding that Williams' comments were "nasty."
"Wendy Williams so wrong for how she spoke about the death of Swavy like come with a little more respect," another person wrote, with a third calling the segment "so gross."
"Wendy Williams brings up Swavy’s death in the most unexpected and disrespectful way imaginable," another tweet read. "Disgusting, Wendy."
An additional Twitter user wrote, "Wendy Williams is so disrespectful. She really had the nerve to sit up there and talked about Swavy (a former famous TikToker who died recently) followers and likes & DID NOT once send condolences to his family."
Wendy Williams is so disrespectful. She really had the nerve to sit up there and talked about Swavy (a former famous TikToker who died recently) followers and likes & DID NOT once send condolences to his family😒
According to the Wilmington Police Department, Swavy, who was known on TikTok for his dances and memes, was the victim of a shooting incident on Monday morning. He was transported to the hospital, where he later died.
The police also noted that the investigation is ongoing, and encouraged anyone with information to reach out here. You can donate to the official memorial fund for Swavy on GoFundMe. As of Friday morning, it has surpassed its $20,000 goal.