In Season 11 of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Sutton Stracke very vocally distanced herself from Erika Girardi after she found out the extent of things both Tom and Erika Girardi were being accused of. She even consulted a lawyer, and was very concerned about not only legal issue, but social stigma that may result from being the friend of someone accused of stealing money from from widows, orphans, burn victims, and victims of medical malpractice.
In a recent episode Erika insulted Sutton’s reaction by attacking Sutton’s background coming from Augusta, GA, which is small-town compared to Erika’s hometown Atlanta, GA. She suggested that Sutton was behaving in a backward, smalltown way by being so concerned about who she was associated with. There’s some footage left on the cutting room floor, however, that gives a deeper motive for Sutton’s hypervigilant self-protection about the situation: she had offered Erika a loan to help her through her divorce from Tom.
“I am not sure how much I want to be around my friend during this time,” Sutton told the other women after she called an emergency meeting about the things highlighted in a bombshell L.A. Times article. “And I’m not being a fair-weather friend, I’m protecting myself. I don’t want my name in an article that’s associated with this.”
The other women joined in, but Lisa Rinna asked “How could that affect you?” She also said she didn’t care about that.
Sutton argued that she wanted to “stay clean” because she was on the board of museums and ballet companies. She went on to point out that no one is friends with Ruth Madoff. “people don’t like cheaters and liars and stealers. They just don’t like ’em.”
Rina asks “What if she’s innocent?”
Sutton then says that she’d eat crow pie if that was the case.
“Right now I am way more important than Erika Girardi is, to me,” Sutton says.
“That’s very honest,” Lisa Rinna comments. It then cuts to a sassy retort from Lisa, who quips “Princesses worry about their reputations, queens don’t.”
Kyle then asks if Sutton’s just worried about her reputation, or if legal issues are worrying her too. Sutton says it’s both.
That’s where the original episode cut off the scene, but in a “never before scene,” Sutton goes on to say that when she got divorced she was initially cut off from all the money. Her attorney advised her to get a loan from someone so she could have liquid cash to pay for her expenses.
This is when Sutton said that she offered to do to the same thing to Erika. This is part of the reason why Sutton was so concerned. Erika declined the loan, but if she had become a lender to Erika she would have a more tangible connection with Erika’s entire situation.
Kyle looked shocked to hear this.
Lisa Rinna then revealed that she had asked Erika how she had money to get out, and Erika told her she “couldn’t talk about that right now.”
In confessional Sutton reflects that if Erika had taken her up on her offer, she could have been in a “bad jam.” She jokingly gave the hypothetical amount of $20 million, which is about the amount the Girardi Keese lawfirm may have funneled into Erika’s companies. Tom Girardi and his lawfirm currently owe their clients millions of dollars, but Tom has no money, so one of the big questions is where the missing money has gone. Lending Erika personal money in this situation could be a big deal.
The scene then immediately jumps back to what aired in the original episode with Kyle saying that she had asked a lawyer friend to explain the L.A. Times article to her.
It’s definitely odd to cut this scene because it adds a lot more depth to Sutton’s behavior after finding out about how deep the accusations against Tom and Erika were. She had been spooked by almost getting too close to tying her own money up in the mess.
The scenes are at the beginning of “Never Before Scene 1113,” which is available on Bravotv.com.
A clip of the scene can be watched on the r/RealHousewives reddit thread. Click here for that.