Home News DJ Tenashar: once a superstar, now a woman down on her luck

DJ Tenashar: once a superstar, now a woman down on her luck

Ms Tenashar’s fortunes took a turn for the worse when she was arrested on July 7 for criminal trespass and suspected drug-related offences at Edgware Road

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Singapore—The country is wondering what’s next for DJ Tenashar, who was not long ago seemingly on top of the world, and now, the latest news about her has been her arrest early last month for attempting to break into a house on Edgware Road.

The DJ and model, now age 33, received an 18-month jail sentence after she pleaded guilty to consuming benzoylecgonine. This metabolite of cocaine and psilocin can be found in most psychedelic mushrooms. She also admitted to possessing another drug, psilocin.

Ms Tenashar, whose real name is Debbie Valerie Tenashar Long and who is a mother to a 12-year-old girl, seemed to want to clean up her life after her prison stint.

In an interview with The Straits Times (ST) just last June, she called her imprisonment a “blessing in disguise” because she met a number of talented musicians while incarcerated, which sparked her own creativity.

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She told ST, “I started discovering girls who could sing really well. They wrote songs and poems, and created their own beats using the stuff that we had.

So we started making music. It was the last place that I would have thought of looking for talent.”

The former DJ even announced her intent of becoming an ambassador against drugs, and said she would go back to help the women in prison who want to be musicians.

“I am intending to bring in equipment like guitars and DJ consoles, and train them to become musicians. Many people have a negative stigma when it comes to prisoners, but I think we can turn that around.”

However, Ms Tenashar’s life took a bizarre turn not long after that.

In the early morning hours of July 5 she was found by the staff of the Berjaya Waterfront Hotel at Johor Bahru, who thought Ms Tenashar was inebriated, asleep on one of the couches in the lobby. She was not registered as a guest at the hotel.

She was then brought to a police station upon her request, because she wanted to file a report, saying she was “trying to run and hide from being murdered.”

However, at the police station the urine sample she provided tested positive for drugs, and Ms Tenashar was promptly arrested.

After her release and return to Singapore, however, Ms Tenashar’s fortunes took another turn when she was arrested two days later, on July 7, for criminal trespass and suspected drug-related offences at Edgware Road.

Once on top of the world

It’s been quite the roller coaster ride for Ms Tenashar, who was once on the list of the top 100 DJs around the globe in DJ Magazine.

She began her career in 2009, and attained fame as the DJ at Avalon in Marina Bay Sands. Ms Tenashar, whose unabashed sexuality is part of her image and brand, also appeared on the cover of FHM in both Singapore and Malaysia in 2012.

In 2013, she made the cover of the Thai version of Playboy.

However, she was arrested in 2015 when the Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) discovered that she was in possession of a product that contained psilocin. A further search in her residence turned up an Erimin 5 tablet, which contains nimetazepam, also a controlled substance in Singapore.

Since she was going abroad for performances, Ms Tenashar was granted bail.

But she failed to return to Singapore and report back to the CNB, only coming back after her passport expired in 2018.

Ms Tenashar, who could have gone to jail for 10 years, was given an 18-month sentence. Her lawyer said in court that she was of good character and that she would join the fight against drugs after her release.

What’s next for the troubled former DJ and model is anyone’s guess./ TISG

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