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Jersey Shore Stars Who Were Arrested

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MTV’s well-known reality TV show, “Jersey Shore,” thrived on drama and conflict between the day it aired on 3 December 2009 and its last episode on 20 December 2012. It received criticism, primarily for letting verbal and sometimes physical altercations escalate between eight housemates, and propagating a stereotypical depiction of Italian Americans. Regardless, the show became a pop culture phenomenon. It continued in the form of eight spin-offs as of mid-2023, and its popularity is still strong. Thus, outsiders can reasonably assume that some of the eight highly-strung, young, attractive and heedless individuals got into trouble with the law over the last 14 years. Fans of the show know that some arrests ended up on TV and made headlines – here they are.

Cast members committed various offenses

Where cast members go, conflict seems to follow. They played fast and loose with each other, and conflicted with intimate partners, fans, people on the street, and government employees. Unsurprisingly, intoxication and domestic violence were the most common offenses. Viewers viewed the roommates get nearly black-out drunk many times, and being in the same friendship group seemed to push them to do things they wouldn’t do alone.

Similarly, viewers became invested in many failed relationships, and the disputes sometimes escalated into aggression, especially when cast members were at the end of their tether. However, the most unexpected offense was tax evasion, while the cast member received an apparently hefty salary from MTV. We covered all criminal offenses, starting with the recent ones.

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Ronnie was taken into custody in April 2021

Ronnie Ortiz-Magro, who left the show in its fifth season, shocked the fans again when the Los Angeles Police Department announced that they’d arrested him in the city’s Playa del Ray section. They were vague about the charges, only stating that he was suspected of breaking the law regarding violence against intimate partners.

Ronnie’s lawyers, Leonard Levin and Scott E. Leemon, said that they needed more time to investigate the accusation. Unfortunately, law enforcement released no further details about the case, except that his daughter, Ariana, was with him, while his ex-girlfriend, Jen Harley, was in Las Vegas. Thus, the police returned Ariana to her biological mother after his arrest.

His girlfriend at the time, Saffire Matos, whom he’d dated since the fall of the previous year and who allegedly called the police, defended him. She said that the couple was fine after the ordeal, and that she appreciated the people who reached out. However, Saffire warned everyone to be careful and respect the couple’s privacy, because there was a lot of misleading information.

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Consequently, Ronnie posted a $100,000 bail at 7:18 p.m., several hours after he was taken to the Van Nuys jail, because his charge was changed from a felony to a misdemeanor. Ronnie posted on Instagram afterwards, writing, ‘I’m grateful for all of my real friends. I take all experiences as lessons.’ They proved that the misconduct was just a blemish on their otherwise stable relationship, by becoming engaged two months later in June, and throwing an engagement party in October. Unfortunately, they ended their engagement in July the next year, reportedly after having crazy fights for several months.

Ronnie fought with Jen in 2018

Ronnie was in big trouble with his April arrest, because that was far from being his first time behind bars. His relationship with Jen was highly toxic, involving several court appearances. Most fans remember that he accused her of domestic violence back in 2018; after they started fighting, Jen slapped him in the face and dragged him with her car after he followed her. She was arrested and charged with domestic battery. Although the court eventually dismissed the charge, the story was far from over.

Shortly afterwards, Ronnie broke into the family home after they went their separate ways. Their doorbell camera caught his entrance; he threw an object to break the window after Jen refused to let him in. He angrily ransacked the place, and smashed their baby daughter’s crib.

Ronnie was accordingly charged with seven misdemeanors and was in big trouble. Luckily, he accepted a plea deal in May 2020 and pleaded no contest to domestic battery and resisting arrest charges. His prosecutor still punished him for his misdeeds; Ronnie received three-years probation, paid $20,000 to a woman’s shelter, Jewish Family Services of LA, served 30 days of community labor, and completed a year-long domestic violence program.

Jen’s charges were dropped

Jen was arrested again in May 2019 for attacking Ronnie during a New Year’s Eve party in a Las Vegas club the previous year, but denied all charges. Furthermore, in December 2019, Jen stopped another woman’s cosmetics in their home’s trash can and stabbed Ronnie in the eye with an eyeliner. He filed a temporary restraining order, and the couple decided that only distance would solve their anger issues. It’s important to note that Jen had another domestic battery charge from 2016, which was also dismissed.

The former couple moved on

Ronnie moved to Las Vegas after the 2019 incident, and they started promoting the sale of their two-floor family home in a Las Vegas gated community. They bought the house for $725,000 but invested in renovations. Thus, they priced it at $869,900 at the time. However, they failed to find a buyer, but the housing crisis and soaring real estate prices benefitted them. Las Vegas Review-Journal reported that the couple upped the price to $1.5 million in late January 2023.

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Ronnie’s rap sheet is even longer

Early “Jersey Shore” fans remember the ruckus that Ronnie caused only a month before the show aired. However, his fans often overlook the unfortunate incident because it happened about a decade and a half ago, and many justify his actions. Ronnie was arrested for fighting a stranger, Stephen Izzo, outside a Seaside Heights nightclub in September 2009.

He stated that he had a good reason – Stephen allegedly disrespected his friends and threw racist remarks at his security guards of African-American descent. Thankfully, the judge was somewhat lenient to Ronnie because he had a clean record. Ronnie went through a pretrial intervention program for a year and a half, and the charges were dropped because he didn’t re-offend. However, Stephen filed a civil suit against Ronnie and the production company, MTV.

As luck would have it, Ronnie escaped another potential jail sentence, financial penalty, or community service. Ronnie was arrested after the New York Police Department issued an outstanding warrant for unpaid parking tickets in August 2010. Luckily, they released him after he satisfied the warrant’s conditions, meaning that he paid what he owed, or struck a deal.

Mike didn’t pay taxes in 2014

Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino, best known for his appearance in “Jersey Shore: Family Vacation,” was investigated meticulously in 2014. He allegedly failed to file a tax return, but most people shrugged their shoulders, thinking that Mike made an honest mistake. However, he appeared in court four years later to face tax evasion charges, and received an eight-month-long sentence. Mike turned himself in to the federal prison on 15 January 2019 alongside his wife Lauren, and was released in September.

Mike was absent from nearly the whole third season of the show because he served time, but returned as a leading cast member in the fourth. Moreover, Mike had to finish the probational period without committing any wrongdoing, and had to complete an undisclosed number of community service hours.

With that in mind, Mike was relieved to tell his Instagram followers on 10 September 2021 that he was finally a free man, and that his probation officer had left his home for hopefully the last time. He also suggested that his time in prison taught him a lesson, and reported being hopeful about the future, saying, ‘The comeback is always greater than the setback.’ Mike’s brother Marc was also involved in tax-dodging activities, but reportedly received a longer sentence because he played a more significant part.

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Jonathan “Jonny” was caught with drugs

Jonathan Manfre, better known as “The Unit,” was most recognizable as Mike Sorrentino’s childhood friend, with whom he produced a workout DVD. Although the personal trainer wasn’t a prominent cast member, he frequently hung out outside the house where the cast members lived in late July 2011, while filming the fifth season.

Jonathan was in front of the said house when police officers caught him in possession of a controlled substance, described as a ‘white powdery substance.’ According to one New Jersey attorney, he had a “special K” drug, a form of horse tranquilizer that humans could abuse in small doses for its effects.

Jonathan ultimately pleaded guilty to a lesser charge after posting $1,500 bail, a disorderly person offense, to avoid going to prison. Instead, he paid $125 and was released, but disappeared from TV screens to focus on his work as a personal trainer, author, men’s physique bodybuilding competitor, and solar panel distributor. However, his precarious situation only became public knowledge when the season aired in the summer of 2012.

Deena was arrested for public intoxication

On 10 June 2012, Deena was arrested for disorderly conduct at an intersection. The Seaside Heights residents would have ignored her antics because she was ‘only a little intoxicated while dancing vigorously’ if she hadn’t started disrupting the traffic. According to the detective in charge, Deena ate meatballs at a Mexican restaurant with cast members while they were filming the sixth season; they exited the premise and ran onto the street. Like Snooki two years before, she faced a $500 fine, although because Deena disrupted the peace by interrupting traffic flow, she could have been sentenced to up to 30 days in jail.

Luckily, the police officers were nice, as it was her first offense. She was released from the so-called drunk tank after she sobered-up, and received a stern warning. Deena admitted guilt at a court sentencing in July, received a $106 fine and paid $33 in court costs for violating the motor vehicle code and not using a sidewalk.

Angelina attacked a fellow woman

Angelina Pivarnick, branded as a bad girl and self-proclaimed “Kim Kardashian of Staten Island,” doesn’t have a clean record. She got into a physical altercation with a woman in December 2010 at the Casbah Night Club at Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort in Atlantic City. According to TMZ, Angelina was there to partake in a celebrity boxing match against Kerry Schwartz of VH1’s “Frank the Entertainer in a Basement Affair” fame.

However, she claimed that the unidentified female started provoking and harassing her before she could go through the ropes, leading to the incident. Angelina said that she would co-operate with the police, but felt that she was a victim of an organized scheme for money or publicity. The unnamed woman allegedly only wanted to photograph Angelina; hence she filed charges against her for simple assault. Two months before, Angelina had punched a limousine driver in the head for allegedly insulting her mother while driving.

Brad Ferro punched Snooki 13 years ago

Although it was all over the Internet and TV, the incident between Nicole ‘Snooki’ Polizzi and a gym (physical education) teacher, Brad Ferro, isn’t well known. MTV filmed the angry public school educator punching Snooki in the face while they stood at the Beachcomber Bar & Grill in Seaside Heights. He was allegedly drunk and responded poorly to verbal provocations, so the local police arrested him at 2 a.m. on 19 August 2010 – he was charged with simple assault and fired from North Queens Community High School – ccording to the Department of Education, they afterwards sent Brad to a teacher reassignment center. Although MTV released a preview clip to tease the then-new TV show, they ultimately scrapped the footage, deeming it ‘extremely disturbing,’ though only after public backlash.

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Snooki was arrested in 2010

Another ruckus that only fans of the first season remember was the arrest of Snooki on 30 July 2010; her misconduct was filmed and aired in the show’s third season. Furthermore, her quotes, “Where’s the beach?” and “I’m a f*cking good person!” were brought up for years, even by Snooki herself. Her actions didn’t receive such harsh criticism, and were funny because she hurt nobody and destroyed nothing. However, Snooki’s ordeal might have had a more dangerous ending without her friends, the camera crew, and law enforcement being there.

Her problems started the night before the fateful day; she drank alcohol with her cast mates during an outing, then took many more sips during her work day. As if that wasn’t irresponsible enough, she visited several bars after clocking out. Therefore, it was evident to her friends, Deena Cortese and Jenni “JWOWW” Farley, that Snooki’s decision-making skills were all over the place.

Although they tried to rein her in, Snooki slipped away and dashed to the nearby beach before she started thrashing around and falling all over the place. Her friends’ worst fears came true, and law enforcement officers showed up. Although they tried to de-escalate the situation and escort her to a safe place, Snooki kept fighting and swearing, forcing their hand. They put her in handcuffs, and she spent two hours at the Seaside Heights Police Department. A local court later dropped the charges, but she paid a $500 fine and did two days of community service. Unsurprisingly, she spent some of that time signing autographs at the community center.

She celebrates the anniversary of her arrest

Unlike Ronnie, who kept getting in trouble with the law, Snooki saw her arrest as a wake-up call. Moreover, her children started re-enacting her disorderly conduct at home because they found it amusing. One of the most memorable ways they honored 30 July was in 2020. Snooki posted a video of Giovanna, then five, getting arrested by her brother, Lorenzo, two years her senior. A year later, she posted a picture of the accident with cops trying to corner her, writing, ‘Happy Anniversary. #history #CriminalAnnoyance.’

Snooki said in February 2023 that she showed the drunken arrest to her children, so that she could explain what happened. Although her two-year-old Angelo was too young to understand, she hoped that they would ‘avoid participating in reality TV shows, have good careers, and go to college.’ However, Snooki was clear about supporting them if they wanted to test it out. Snooki also regretted her arrest, but felt that it helped her become a good mother.

All cast members overcame their struggles

Although the misbehavior ranged from getting drunk and disturbing public peace to severe physical retaliation against intimate and marital partners, and even attempting to avoid paying taxes to Uncle Sam, the courts taught them a lesson. They are all the better for it, too. Snooki is a devoted mother of three, and is happily married. Ronnie recently moved from LA to Miami with his four-year-old daughter to start a sneaker store, and get a change of scenery. Brad’s teaching aspirations ended, so he joined the armed forces in 2011. Others have improved their lives in other ways, and many returned for the sixth season, “Jersey Shore; Family Vacation,” in 2023, meaning that their misdeeds didn’t permanently ruin their reputation.

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How Amy Slaton is Coping with Her Divorce and Raising Two Sons?

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The first season of “1000-Lb Sisters” gave viewers a beautiful life story between high school friends who went their separate ways after graduation, met a few years later, declared their love for each other, eloped, and then invited their loved ones two years later to witness as they vowed to spend the rest of their lives together. Sadly, their union was doomed to fail. Amy Slaton and Michael Halterman are currently embroiled in a court battle to end their marriage, and determine how the once fan favorites will share the custody of their two children. Typically, divorce proceedings and custody battles are difficult for the parties involved – here is how Amy is coping with her divorce and raising the children.

Amy and Michael

When “1000-Lb Sisters” premiered on TLC in 2020, Michael was the picture of devotion. At the time, Tammy lived with the couple – she’d just undergone a significant transformation after her surgery, and can walk by herself, but things were different in the beginning. Her weight made walking and other physical activities difficult for her. Therefore, she was confined to a wheelchair and needed help with mobility. Michael graciously allowed Tammy to live with them so Amy could help take care of her. At times, he took on the responsibility of caring for his sister-in-law, who wasn’t easy to deal with according to fans, when Amy was not around or needed a break. Michael waved his green flag further by sacrificing his free time with Amy, driving her to errands and her sister to her appointments, and cheering Amy on as she dieted, exercised, and struggled her way through weight loss until she reached a safe weight to carry their first child.

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The Last Straw

Michael’s stint as the show’s resident saint and model husband lasted until the second season, when their first child, Gage, was born. According to Amy, he left all household and childcare responsibilities to her, and didn’t contribute financially towards household expenses, since he was unemployed. Things got worse, but it was only after the birth of their second child, Glenn, that fans confirmed her accusations. Michael tested positive for Covid-19 while Amy was in hospital for Glenn’s birth. After leaving hospital, she went to live with her sister, Amanda, until Michael recovered and tested negative.

Amy returned home with a newborn and a toddler to a dirty house that hadn’t been cleaned since she left for the hospital. Meanwhile, Michael admitted that his symptoms were an occasional but mild headache. A frustrated and exasperated Amy, who had barely recovered from a rough birthing experience, had to clean the house while taking care of two children and healing from a c-section, much to the chagrin of fans, who called out Michael’s behavior, and agreed with Amy, who confessed that she felt as if she had three children.

Several other moments in the season showed Michael disinterested and oblivious to Amy struggling to take care of the children and the household. One particular incident riled-up viewers and had them supporting Amy’s decision to leave Michael later on in the show. Amy and Michael were hosting her family in their backyard. As they sat eating, both children started fussing; Gage was crying and Glenn was hungry and screaming his lungs out for a bottle. The whole time, Michael continued to enjoy his food, oblivious to his crying children as his sleep-deprived wife tried to calm them down. Amy complained that Michael was having fun with everyone else instead of helping her calm downone of the children. It took the intervention of Amanda to calm down the boys by helping Amy with Gage, while she fed Glenn and changed his diaper. The incident drove Amy closer to her threshold.

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For Amy, the straw that broke the camel’s back came in February, when Michael got angry and became violent. On the fateful day, Amy had prepared the children and gotten herself ready to go out and have lunch with Tammy. However, Michael was opposed to the idea, leading to the argument that ended the marriage. In the middle of the heated argument, Michael started throwing things around, prompting Amy to call 911. As their marriage disintegrated, Amy accused Michael of hitting the boys and pulling their hands, neglecting his financial obligations to the family, and making her take on all the chores. She later filed charges against Michael for domestic violence, and requested the court to grant an emergency protection order.

Divorce and Custody Update

With their marriage broken irretrievably, Michael filed for the dissolution of his marriage to Amy in March. Around the same time, Amy filed an order for protection, seeking to bar Michael from having any contact with Gage and Glenn. However, Michael fought the order, claiming that he’d shared the caregiver role for the two children with Amy since their birth, and had the right to see them; he also hoped that the court would allow him to share custody with Amy. She relented soon afterwards, and amended the order to allow Michael to see the children, but petitioned the court to make his contact with them supervised. The judge ruled that Michael could see the children on the condition that he was accompanied by his mother and sister.

In April, one month after filing his divorce petition, Michael returned to court seeking a civil restraining order against Amy. He wanted the order to prevent him and Amy from being within 500 feet of each other or each other’s residence, and prevent either party from talking about the specifics of the divorce and child custody petitions in public or on social media. He also sought a parenting schedule that would divide the children’s time between him and Amy, and petitioned the judge to issue an order allowing him into his and Amy’s house to pick up his personal items.

The divorce and child custody cases are ongoing, with the (former) couple set to attend the next hearing on 1 June 2023. For now, Amy has withdrawn the charges she filed against Michael for domestic violence. The court has temporarily also granted Michael’s request for shared custody. The couple is allowed to communicate through text messages that are monitored by the court, to arrange pick-ups, drop-offs, and other issues related to Gage and Glenn. However, Amy is opposing Michael’s request for permanent joint custody, arguing that the children need consistency, and alleging that Michael is relying on his mother to take care of them, instead of parenting them himself.

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Life After Divorce

Amy and Michael’s divorce isn’t final yet, but she’s coping well and ready to move on. According to recent posts on social media, she is powering through the end of her marriage with a positive attitude and a transformation of her life. A major hairstyle change is a typical indicator of rebirth in a woman’s life, and Amy is no exception. She recently colored her hair a vibrant purple, that makes her stand out and draws all eyes to her. The bold hair color goes well with the confidence and positivity she is emanating, as evident in her new pictures. She’s taken to posting bright pictures of herself all over her social media, and captioning them with positive and uplifting messages of hope, the courage to start over, and turning pain into power. She isn’t afraid to use bold and provocative soundtracks such as Lexy Panterra’s “Bad Bitch” to accompany pictures and videos of herself.

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Amy’s dedication to her children hasn’t wavered. She spends most of her time taking care of the boys, who adore her as seen in the snippets she shares of her time with them on her social media. She’s driven by her own childhood, during which she encountered abuse and neglect from her mother, and her vow to ensure that her boys are assured of her love for them. Besides loving them, she’s teaching them independence and responsibility, as evidenced in a video she shared recently of Gage helping her clean the house with a toy vacuum cleaner. While she devotes most of her time and energy to the boys, Amy is taking time for self-care and self-love. Occasionally, she shares pictures and highlights of nights out with her friends, with whom she has fun and lets loose, before going home to her boys.

Ultimately, Amy is happy to be raising her two boys as she and Michael face off in court to finalize their divorce, and determine how they will parent their children. She’s updated her bio to declare herself a single mother, and seems to be enjoying her life without Michael. With her family and friends rallying around as her support system, there’s little doubt that she’ll continue to thrive.

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What happened to Sugar Bear? What’s he doing now?

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Whether you loved or you hated them, there’s no doubt that the stars of “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo Child” became some of the most unforgettable faces of reality TV in the past decade. Starting with the family’s simple way of living, their personalities, or how all of that contrasted with Honey Boo Boo’s goals as a pageant contestant, there was simply no way to ignore the charming and sometimes-controversial endeavors of the Shannon and Thompson families.

It’s been a long while since “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” left TV screens for good, but its stars keep making headlines for a variety of reasons, except for Sugar Bear, the family’s patriarch who has surprisingly been living a toned-down life for some time now.

So where is Sugar Bear now, and where has life taken him after the show’s cancellation? Stay here to discover all!

Where Is Sugar Bear Now?

It’s been a while since we last saw Sugar Bear on TV, but he hasn’t completely fallen out of the spotlight. A couple of years after the cancellation of “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” in 2014, the spin-off “Mama June: Road to Redemption” successfully premiered on TLC, featuring almost the entire Thompson and Shannon families in it, with Sugar Bear included.

However, Sugar Bear, whose real name is Mike Thompson, has been absent from the newly premiered sixth season of “Road To Redemption” in 2023, and his presence in the past fifth season was scarce as well. This comes after Sugar Bear’s relationship with his daughter Alana – ‘Honey Boo Boo’ – became distant in recent times, along with his divorce from his second wife Jennifer, and other romantic splits he’s gone through since then.

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Other than that, Sugar Bear’s health has been improving since undergoing a couple of cosmetic procedures, including dental surgery in 2022. Although his social media hasn’t been active since mid-2022 and no news about his possible future projects on TV has been revealed, everything points to him moving forward with his life, regardless of the hardships he’s encountered along the way.

Abuse Accusations

Even though Sugar Bear gave the impression of being a dedicated family man, in recent times that has been denied by his children. According to an interview that Alana and her older sister Lauryn ‘Pumpkin’ gave to the Dumb Blonde podcast in 2022, Sugar Bear abused his daughter and step-daughters physically and emotionally.

In the case of Pumpkin, she recalled the time when her step-father threw a set of keys toward her at 14 years old, injuring her eye in the process: ‘I had to get a buckle put on the back of my eye and stuff like that. It just started to get progressively worse,’ she said. This incident was featured in “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo”, but described as an accident back in the day.

Regarding how the family hid the abuse from the show’s staff, Pumpkin affirmed that some of the abuse occurred while filming. One of the incidents she recalled during the interview was when Sugar Bear threw a lotion bottle toward one of the staff members and almost hurt her seriously. He also allegedly behaved ‘very mean’ towards everyone in the family, including his blood-daughter Alana, to whom he was sometimes unkind due to the fact he wanted to have a boy and not a girl.

All in all, it seems that more and more drama keeps being unearthed from “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo”.

Does He Keep In Contact With His Children?

Due to the complicated relationship between Sugar Bear and his children, it doesn’t come as a surprise that they’re mostly not in contact with each other these days.

Signs of the growing distance between him and his family were already evident in the earliest seasons of “Mama June: Road to Redemption”, back when jealousy-related issues with his then-new wife Jennifer affected his relationship with Alana. Later on, Mama June’s drug issues left a teen Alana in the charge of her older sister Pumpkin, instead of Sugar Bear.

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As seen in the fifth season of the show, Sugar Bear ultimately gave full custody of Alana to Pumpkin and her husband Joshua, but affirming his daughter was ‘the only thing he had’ and felt that giving away her custody was ‘basically signing her out’ of his life.

Alana doesn’t seem to hold her father in high regard; as she told Entertainment Tonight in 2022, she felt that Sugar Bear’s emotional outbursts weren’t genuine, saying ‘He just wants folks to feel bad for him’, and also admitted that she doesn’t reply to his constant efforts to get closer to her, feeling that he had waited too long to strengthen their relationship.

Besides his estranged relationship with Alana, it doesn’t seem that Sugar Bear is on better terms with the rest of his adopted daughters either.

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Health Scare

Though Sugar Bear is fortunately healthy these days, it hasn’t been long since he went through a serious health scare. In mid-2022, he went on a makeover mission, changing things about his body with which he hadn’t felt comfortable, as a way to celebrate his 50th birthday.

However, just when he went to improve the condition of his teeth, his dentist found white spots all over his lower gums, signaling the possibility of buccal cancer. According to TMZ, Sugar Bear feared that his decades-long taste for tobacco could have resulted in serious health problems, thus making the situation even scarier.

Nonetheless, in the end not only did a specialist determined that Sugar Bear fortunately didn’t have cancer, but he was also able to get new teeth to replace his rotten ones. He reportedly also underwent liposuction and got fillers, botox, and a hair transplant.

While the results of his makeover were visible in some of the photos he shared on social media, the most important part was to know that he was healthy.

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What Happened To His Relationships?

While many people remember Sugar Bear from his time in “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo”, when he was still together with Mama June, by the time the show premiered in 2012, the couple had been together for several years, with him as a step-father to Mama June’s three daughters from previous relationships and as a father to Alana, who they welcomed in 2005.

However, it didn’t take long from there until things between Mama June and Sugar Bear came to an end, effectively parting ways in 2014. Though she moved to other relationships, Sugar Bear remained single for a while before meeting a woman named Jennifer, with whom he tied the knot in 2017.

While Jennifer is well known for her appearances in the earliest seasons of “June Mama: Road To Redemption”, she and Sugar Bear didn’t have an easy path. As seen in the show, the couple faced several crises, most of them related to his alleged unfaithfulness. The couple eventually went their separate ways in late 2021, but didn’t reveal the reasons behind their split, as reported by TV Shows Ace.

In May 2022, Sugar Bear officially started dating Heather Rood, a nurse from Maine. Though it’s unclear where or when exactly they met, the couple seemed to be over the moon for the longest time, before Heather broke news about their split in May 2023, affirming it was her who chose to walk away, but left details about the cause of their split unclear.

What Will Happen To The Show?

Though “Mama June: Road To Redemption” has been longer on TV than its predecessor “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo”, the show has also seen the family distance themselves from each other, especially when it comes to Mama June’s drug issues and Sugar Bear’s estrangement from his daughters.

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So far, Sugar Bear hasn’t been seen in the still-airing sixth season of the show, and no positive news about his possible return to TV has been revealed. Though this doesn’t necessarily mean that Sugar Bear will be gone from the show forever, his absence gives a hint of the status of his relationship with his daughter.

While it’s positive that Sugar Bear has been improving certain aspects of his life in recent times, whether those changes also include reconnecting with his daughter Alana has been an unsolved issue for a long time.

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What happened to Orange County Choppers after “American Chopper”?

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Orange County Choppers (OCC) is probably the world’s most famous custom motorcycle manufacturing company, revered by bikers around the globe as the birthplace of builds that completely changed the game. However, under the surface of creative ingenuity and brimming passion lay a greatly strained relationship between father and son.

It’s precisely this rift between the two that made the series all the more remarkable, adding a massive elements of reality TV to an already very absorbing documentary show. Paul John Teutul Sr. (often called Senior) and Paul Michael Teutul Jr.’s (often called Junior) co-operation produced one-of-a-kind machines that stunned the world, and their lack thereof left audiences scratching their heads as to why they even worked together.

From its inception in 2003 to the time it first stopped airing in 2012, “American Chopper: The Series” continually made headlines across numerous media outlets, and consequently a lot of money for its parent network, the Discovery Channel. With the addition of just a few cameras on their premises, Orange County Choppers from Newburgh, New York, went from a private business to a global sensation.

The time bomb that the company was built on eventually had to implode, splitting up the fabled father-son duo and starting another, perhaps even greater story. Far from being an end to the saga that captured the world’s attention, the temporary finish of “American Chopper: The Series” paved the way for both of the Teutuls to rise to even greater popularity.

Chasing their own legend

The start of the crumbling of “American Chopper: The Series” was the culmination of Senior and Junior’s fights, which over time seemed more and more to have stemmed from actual hatred and unwillingness to listen. Their last and biggest altercation even involved physical violence, with Junior smashing a chair on the floor and kicking the door into the wall on his way out of Senior’s office.

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It all started when Junior was more than 45 minutes late to work yet again, which made Senior furious. He told the camera crew that he was completely done with letting this behavior continue, building himself up to even greater anger as the son slowly made his way to his office.

Junior wasn’t really having any of that, so he replied in kind with the same shouting volume, ultimately bursting out with rage and trashing parts of his father’s office. He stormed outside without a word, as the father yelled at his back that his contract was terminated. Junior expressed relief at this statement, and left the premises, never to return.

A truly independent OCC

Although Senior generally ruled his business with an iron fist, it wasn’t until Junior’s departure that his father achieved complete freedom in his builds, since the other Paul had a very different idea of what their bikes should look like.

This variety in taste seemed a promising factor at first, as the audience expected them to combine the styles and build truly remarkable machines. However, it only served to further the already significant family rift, birthing issues for both of the design masterminds as they clashed over the tiniest of details.

Senior finally built bikes with complete creative liberty, which greatly pleased the fans who preferred him from the outset. Conversely, those who mostly rooted for Junior found it hard to support the show without him, which led to mixed overall feelings regarding the continuation of “American Chopper.”

With that, the potential customers of OCC were also split between the company and Junior’s brand-new business, Paul Jr. Designs (PJD). Whereas before everyone who wanted a legendary bike would give Senior a call, it was now a question of taste in a true old-vs-new fashion, with Junior preferring to push the limits of what is considered a motorbike, while his father stuck to more conventional methods, and still greatly attractive old-school aesthetics.

Consequently, it became apparent that the two businesses were semi-direct competitors, which is a discomfort that OCC had never had to deal with prior to Junior leaving it. In spite of the father and son not working in the same space anymore, their rivalry became even stronger, pushing both of their creative drives to even greater lengths.

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It’s thus undeniable that OCC entered a new age post-2008, with its builds becoming perhaps more iconic than at any other time, as the work was further streamlined thanks to very few arguments among the staff, as well was Senior trying his hardest to outdo the younger talent.

Worthy of mention is the fact that Junior wasn’t the only one who left, as several other important and highly skilled workers went to join PJD in the years following its creation, including the unforgettable MVP of custom bike building Vincent DiMartino (Vinnie), as well as Cody Connelly and Michael Teutul. This outflow of talent most definitely took a toll on OCC, which was forced to resort to brand-new employees.

Blood against blood

In 2010, “American Chopper: Senior vs. Junior” gave hope to the fans that the series will continue for many years to come, but they were let down when it was brought to an end only two years later. Still, throughout those 56 episodes, it was evident that both father and son had reached a new understanding of chopper building, outdoing the supposedly impossibly high standards that they had set while working together.

Many prominent choppers were featured throughout the spin-off, such as the St. Jude Bike, built by Senior at OCC to honor and support the efforts of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital from Memphis, Tennessee, which is a non-profit medical corporation centered on extremely debilitating children’s diseases, such as leukemia and various other cancers.

The Geico Bike was proudly revealed as one of PJD’s first designs, created for the GEICO Philanthropic Foundation, which has empowered numerous charities throughout the US, and helped them support diverse communities.

“American Chopper: The Series” was canceled alongside its spin-off in 2012, leading many to believe that this was indeed the end of OCC’s dominance on the TV screen. However, their next appearance was just around the corner.

OCC, and OCC alone

“Orange County Choppers” premiered on CMT, on August 18 2013, with a pilot that lasted two hours. It featured even more advanced builds than was previously thought possible by the fans of the franchise, with a new creative director to help steer the team to ever greater creations.

Evan Favaro was said by many viewers to be the second-best addition to the crew, aside from Junior himself, who was definitely not returning at that point. Regardless of his son’s absence, Senior was more determined than ever before to push the limits of chopper design and revolutionize his craft yet again.

While the builds were undoubtedly impressive, the series’ second season never really took off, and so it finished with the airing of its eighth episode on 11 January 2014. Thinking that this was actually the end, the fans were greatly surprised by the 2014 “American Chopper” special episode, entitled “American Chopper: Shaq Bike”, created to showcase the process of OCC building a chopper for the legendary NBA player Shaquille O’Neal.

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Although not very significant on its own, the special was the first time after Paul Jr.’s split that OCC almost entirely took over “American Chopper” and its spin-offs, which most likely would have happened, if only the series had continued. 2014 was beginning to spell the true end of the saga, but then 2018 rolled around.

The long-awaited return of “American Chopper: The Series” took place on 1 Mar 2018, featuring the 11th season. Unlike earlier, Senior and Junior were working together again, although not to the point of anyone believing the father would absorb the son’s business. The episode entitled “Welcome Back” opened up the ten-year anniversary, not showing much collaboration between the Teutuls early on.

However, it was later revealed that their relationship became much healthier over the years, probably due to each having their own unrestricted creative liberty. It was also not out of the question for certain work to be relegated to the other party throughout tight deadlines, making OCC and PJD partners as much as competitors.

The focus was still very much on the shops’ individual projects however, as fully mutual ones were definitely a thing of the past. The only exception is their collaboration on fixing the old New York Yankees chopper, which Junior requested from OCC after the machine had been severely defaced and sold into scrap.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B03NXjchpXv/

Things seemed to be looking up for both the franchise and the Teutul family, leading fans to trust yet again that the series had a long and bright future ahead. There was even hope that the shops would eventually merge, and OCC would have its second in command as before, but without the aggressive arguments that defined the first six years of the show.

To their customary misfortune, it became obvious after the 12th season’s finish on 2 April 2019 that no new episodes were in the making. The only reasonable conclusion was that the age of “American Chopper: The Series” was truly over.

The farewell was presumably made easier by the ultimate two-hour special that came out on 28 July 2020, in which OCC and PJD came together to build a bike from scratch – something that had never happened in the entire history of the series.

The two protagonists were the same, but a lot had changed over the years, and OCC was moving its HQ for the first time in 17 years. This provided a bothersome time constraint for the Teutuls, as they had only eight weeks to build a chopper deserving of their legendary repute for ABC Supply Company, the biggest roofing enterprise in the country.

OCC’s trials and tribulations

Aside from the world-famous series, a few other negative factors combined to bring OCC to where it is in 2023. It became clear over the years that Senior’s talent for building unparalleled choppers didn’t really help with much else, as he fell on hard times upon Junior’s departure.

For example, a bankruptcy fraud lawsuit haunting the Teutuls from as early as 2003 culminated in mid-2007, draining energy and resources from an already spent Senior. In essence, it was alleged that he and the sons fraudulently filed for bankruptcy after selling assets of one son’s company to that of another.

They were accused of abusing the right to declare bankruptcy so as to avoid paying the significant costs incurred by transferring all the assets, and it was said that they owed upwards of $1.3 million to the damaged parties. A settlement of $500,000 was eventually reached, with the cash being given to the accuser by OCC.

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In 2018 there was a brand new bankruptcy filing by Senior, in which he stated that he was making only $15,000 per month, stating that he owed approximately 50 creditors almost $1.1 million, with his total wealth numbering $1.8 million. He also listed the family home for sale, but had great trouble finding a buyer.

As if that weren’t enough, he had lost another lawsuit in 2020, paying photographer Scott Gunnells almost $260,000 for using his artwork without consent. One particular photo that Scott took was printed on various merchandise items by OCC, and was shown on screen in the series multiple times as well.

OCC into the future

For the aforementioned reasons, a decision was finally made in early 2020 to move the business to new premises, in St. Petersburg, Florida, right next to the famed Bert’s Barracuda Harley-Davidson store. The new location allowed Senior to expand into other ventures as well, fulfilling the lifelong dream of turning OCC into a lifestyle brand, instead of just a chopper workshop.

The facility was named OCC Road House & Museum, featuring the standard work area and retail section, as well as several amenities one wouldn’t normally expect near a chopper store, such as a restaurant, billiard hall, concert pavilion, and museum. The facility has been operating at full steam since late June 2021, attracting perhaps even bigger crowds than during the heyday of the “American Chopper” franchise

Their website is mostly dedicated to the restaurant service, but it also lists the frequent one-of-a-kind events that take place on the premises, such as live music performances at the concert hall, and biker get-togethers that are attended by chopper aficionados from all over the country.

All in all, in spite of the numerous obstacles along the way, it can be said with some certainty that Senior has got over his monetary woes, and found a place under the bright blue sky for OCC, which is well on its way to becoming an all-encompassing brand.

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