Miss Florida makes top 16

Published On: Jan 30 2013 03:51:53 PM EST
Updated On: Jan 13 2013 12:33:31 PM EST
LAS VEGAS, NV -

A 23-year-old contestant from Brooklyn, N.Y., has won the title of Miss America.

Mallory Hagan won the Las Vegas beauty pageant Saturday night after tap dancing to James Brown's "Get Up Off of That Thing" and answering a question about whether armed guards belong in grade schools. Her response was that we should not fight violence with violence.

Hagan defeated Miss South Carolina Ali Rogers, who took second, and Miss Oklahoma Alicia Clifton, who finished third.

Miss Florida, Laura McKeeman, made it through the first major round of eliminations-- when judges narrowed the group from 53 to 16. The University of Florida graduate was cut when the group was narrowed to 12.

Hagan wins a $50,000 college scholarship and gets the crown for one year. Her platform is stopping child sexual abuse.

She is expected to spend her title reign on a nationwide speaking tour and raising money for the Children's Miracle Network, the organization's official charity.

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