This week, police apprehended former Destiny’s Child member Farrah Franklin outside of an Atlanta-area gym.
According to reports, the 35-year-old R&B C-lister was drunkenly arguing with a man at around 3 a.m. When the police asked Franklin how much she’d had to drink, she allegedly responded “not enough.” Unfortunately, the singer’s incredible comedic timing wasn’t enough to save her from a slew of public intoxication and marijuana possession charges.
Police say Franklin was visibly intoxicated, and was harboring “a green, leafy substance” in her purse. Her mugshot, in all its red-nosed glory, was released to the public on Thursday. Franklin is apparently still in custody, either unwilling or unable to pay her $250 bail. And you thought Becky with the good hair had it bad.
Unfortunately, this is far from Franklin’s first run in with the law. She’s already been arrested twice for disorderly conduct, in 2011 and 2014. The 2014 incident was possibly Franklin’s nadir—after a night out in Myrtle Beach with NFL players Da’Quan Bowers and Ricky Sapp, the athletes apparently called the police on Franklin, who was then found lying down in a neighbor’s front yard. If nothing else, Farrah Franklin’s charges showcase her wandering spirit, from South Carolina to Atlanta to L.A., the site of her 2011 disorderly conduct booking.
Franklin’s short-lived career with Destiny’s Child started in 1999, when she was hired as an extra for the “Bills, Bills, Bills” music video. The group’s manager (and Beyoncé’s father) Mathew Knowles proceeded to invite Franklin on board alongside Michelle Williams, which apparently came as quite a surprise to the suddenly ousted original group members LaTavia Roberson and LeToya Luckett.
After six months of being allowed to stand next to Beyoncé, Franklin’s lightning luck ran out. Bey herself announced her bandmate’s dismissal in an MTV interview, claiming that the firing was a group decision, and the result of Franklin going MIA for three separate promotional tours. In turn, Franklin fought back in the media, claiming that she actually walked out on Destiny’s Child because of issues with management.
She claimed that after Mathew Knowles and his team started “coming down” on her after a bout with the flu, the singer decided she had had it with the hyper-controlling girl group Svengali: “It’s not a way you would want somebody treating your 18-year-old daughter fresh out of the hospital.” Disillusioned and dehydrated, Franklin up and quit. As for Beyoncé’s trash talk, Farrah insists that she was out of Destiny’s Child by the time those promotional events went down—hence her noticeable absence. Naturally, she argues, the Knowles’ were worried about the PR implications of Destiny’s Children dropping like flies, and made Franklin look like a slacker to cover up the fact that she was the third disgruntled bandmate to leave the group in just six months.
While daddy Knowles’ managerial tactics may not have been all that, Franklin and the other Destiny’s Child cast-offs are no doubt regretting their inability to get with the program.
After her six months on top, the trash-talked singer embarked upon a fifteen year “solo career,” the highlight of which was half an episode of Millionaire Matchmaker. Yes, in between being signed and dropped by two labels, forming an ephemeral girl group, and making appearances in a handful of movies and music videos, Franklin lent her notoriety to Patti Stanger’s dating show for rich people. Franklin, who is probably worth less than Blue Ivy’s daily allowance, didn’t really belong on the Bravo hit in the first place. To make matters worse, the “millionairess” showed up to an arranged date four hours late.
But Franklin isn’t letting a lack of love and a penchant for public intoxication keep her from her hustle.
The singer is peddling a new single, “Magic n’ Makeup,” along with a video and the promise of a full-length album coming out soon—which would technically be her debut. There are also talks of a tell-all book, which will include gossip about Beyoncé and prime anecdotes like Franklin’s claim that she wouldn’t even let Tina Knowles do her hair, out of fear that she would try and sabotage her through unflattering coiffure.
If nothing else, Franklin’s riches to rags story reminds us all to stop feeling so bad for Michelle Williams, and consider the truly downtrodden ex-Destiny’s Child members among us.