---- — BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Miss Nevada Nia Sanchez, a fourth-degree black belt in the Korean martial art of taekwondo, was crowned Miss USA 2014 on last night.
She beat contestants from all the states and the District of Columbia for the title of 63rd Miss USA.
Erin Brady, of South Glastonbury, Connecticut, the 2013 winner, gave up her crown to Sanchez after a three-hour telecast from the Baton Rouge Civic Center in Louisiana.
Sanchez will go on to represent the U.S. at the Miss Universe competition later this year.
In a vibrant red floor-length fishtail gown, Miss Nevada talked about the importance of women being able to defend themselves when asked by judge Rumor Willis a question about the high rate of sexual assaults on college campuses.
Sanchez said bringing awareness to the issue was important, as well as women taking it upon themselves to learn how to defend themselves.