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Miley Cyrus’ 10 Biggest Scandals

From leaked photos to accusations of racism, here are the former Disney starlet’s most controversial, image-shifting moments

She can’t stop. Miley Cyrus has been courting controversy since she was barely a teen – morphing from the biggest Disney star of her era to pop’s most scandalous It Girl. Over the last decade, she has shrewdly threaded her biggest headlines into her persona – although that approach has backfired along the way. As she prepares her next musical era, here is a look back at the singer-actress’ most jaw-dropping moments.

Jesse Helt, Miley Cyrus

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August 2014: VMA Date’s Jail Sentence

Cyrus returned to the VMAs a year later for a much more subdued appearance as a major nominee, including Video of the Year for “Wrecking Ball.” This time, she decided to use the massive platform for good, and had Jesse Helt, a formerly homeless young man, accept the night’s top award on her behalf. At the podium, Helt spoke about issues pertaining to youth homelessness during a touching speech as Cyrus cried in the audience. But the charitable act backfired when Helt’s criminal record came to light soon after the show: He had been arrested in 2010 for breaking and entering an apartment in Oregon, and violated his probation by leaving the state to pursue his artistic dreams in California. He was eventually sentenced to six months in jail.

May 2017: Remarks on Rap Music

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May 2017: Remarks on Rap Music

In the years following Bangerz, Cyrus continued to settle into life as a public figure, toying with her image, dropping a free, experimental album Miley Cyrus and Her Dead Petz in 2015, and spending time with her on-and-off fiance Liam Hemsworth. In May, she announced her planned musical return, once again shedding her recent past. While hinting at a more rootsy, country-infused sound during an interview with Billboard, Cyrus controversially took aim at modern hip-hop, accusing the genre (which she once loved) of being too misogynistic and flashy.  “I can’t listen to that anymore. That’s what pushed me out of the hip-hop scene a little. It was too much ‘Lamborghini, got my Rolex, got a girl on my cock’ — I am so not that.” Cyrus later responded via Instagram by defending her comments

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