TLC has pulled the plug on its hit reality show Here Comes Honey Boo Boo after reports surfaced that star "Mama June" Shannon is dating a convicted child molester, Mark McDaniel.
Honey Boo Boo was a spinoff of the hit reality series Toddlers and Tiaras. It follows 9-year-old pageant star Alana "Honey Boo Boo" Thompson and her family.
On Thursday, TMZ posted a cuddly photo of Shannon, 35, and McDaniel, who was convicted of aggravated child molestation and imprisoned in 2004. Allegedly the 8-year-old victim was related to Shannon's family.
"TLC has canceled the series Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and ended all activities around the series, effective immediately," the network announced on Friday. "Supporting the health and welfare of these remarkable children is our only priority. TLC is faithfully committed to the children's ongoing comfort and well-being.”
June denied she was dating McDaniel on Thursday. "It isnt true i promise," she wrote on Facebook. "My kids r #1 priority over anything else." She continued to deny they were dating on Friday, as has McDaniel's son and June's daughter Lauryn "Pumpkin" Shannon.
"Just got a phone call this morning from TLC and as of right now there will be no more production of the show… the statement of me dating a sex offender is totally untrue," June posted. "Pumpkin has openly said that I did not — that I'm not dating him and also his son," she said. "I would not ever, ever, ever put my kids in danger. I love my kids too much. That is my past. I have not seen that person in 10 years and don't seem to want to see that person."
Clearly, TLC isn't buying it. They apparently have shot episodes for the new season, but will not air them. However, the show was not in production when the news broke this week.
In September, Mama June and Sugar Bear Thompson (Alana's father) announced that they ended their relationship.
"Sugar Bear and I have decided to take some time apart to figure out some things in our relationship," the pair said in a statement. "We are taking things day by day, but regardless of what happens, the girls will always be our number one priority. We want to thank y'all for your support."
TLC finished airing the fourth season of Honey Boo Boo in August with 1.8 million viewers tuning in. Although that number was down from previous seasons, it was still one of the network's most popular shows.