NEW YORK – Miss New Jersey says she's doing nothing illegal in the photos sent by someone trying to blackmail her into giving up her crown.
In an interview on NBC's "Today" show Monday, Amy Polumbo said the photos show no nudity, pornography or underage drinking.
"I am not doing anything illegal" in the pictures, she said.
The 22-year-old college student said she has no idea who might have assembled two packages of private photos that were sent to Miss New Jersey and Miss America pageant officials last week.
"Whoever this is, I think they're a very miserable person and I really feel bad for them," Polumbo said.
She wouldn't rule out other contestants.
"It really could be anyone," she said. "And it's really disheartening to think it would be a contestant."
The anonymous sender threatened in a letter to release the photos publicly if Polumbo doesn't drop out of the Miss America pageant. She has refused to do so.
Her lawyer, Anthony Caruso, has said that fictitious captions added to the photos were more troubling than the photos themselves. He said some of photos came from Polumbo's former Facebook Web page.
Caruso said he hoped Miss America officials will decide this week to allow Polumbo to compete in the pageant.
He also said the matter is being investigated by the state Attorney General's office.
Caruso wouldn't allow Polumbo to be interviewed by The Associated Press on Monday.
"We have been asked by the attorney general's office to be very careful what we say about the case," he said.
Lee Moore, a spokesman for the attorney general's office, said Monday he couldn't confirm or deny whether there is an investigation.