Erika Girardi Defends Against Lawsuit and Drinking Digs by RHOBH Costars: 'My Life to Destroy or Build'
The focus turned back to Erika Girardi's legal drama — and her drinking problems — on this week's episode of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.
This Bravo hit picked up with the ladies gathered together at Dorit Kemsley's Homeless Not Toothless charity event. In the previous episode, Lisa Rinna and Sutton Stracke got into a blowout argument in front of the guests over the Georgia designer's allegations about her paying for Lisa, 59, and husband Harry Hamlin's tickets to Elton John's annual charity gala.
Now, after things settled down a bit, Garcelle Beuavis asked if there was "anything else we need to clear up" amongst the group. Sutton, in turn, brought up how she didn't appreciate Erika, 51, calling her a "friend with liabilities" while previously speaking to Garcelle, 55.
"I think of myself as a good friend, but there is something that has happened to me that I haven't talked to y'all about," Sutton began.
Turning her attention to Erika, Sutton said she was sharing "something about friends with liabilities." She then revealed that an attorney contacted her about one of the lawsuits Erika and her estranged husband Tom Girardi are involved in.
"The attorney thought that I had information," she continued. "It wasn't a subpoena yet because I hired a litigator to answer questions."
RELATED: RHOBH's Erika Girardi Mixed 'Medication with Alcohol' to 'Numb' Herself from Real-Life Drama
Erika, raising her voice, said she knew exactly what they were going to ask Sutton. A clip then played, featuring Sutton claiming at last season's reunion that she had heard a rumor that one of Tom's former partners left his law firm over shady business practices.
"What I've learned is Erika has a lot of lawsuits in front of her," Sutton said. "My point is more, you were a liability to all of us last year. That's why you are a liability and not me! You've proven that!"
To that, Erika shouted, "I told you to be quiet! I told you to be quiet!"
Amy Sussman/Getty Erika Girardi
Later in the episode, Sutton and Erika had separate discussions with fellow cast mates over a meal. When Erika addressed the matter with Lisa, the Rinna Beauty founder questioned Sutton's reasoning for sharing the lawsuit information with the group.
"Obviously, she was contacted by somebody but did not tell me and then chose to keep that and then throw that out in the public forum," said Erika as Lisa replied, "That's what she does."
Even though they both agreed Sutton can be "fun" at times, Lisa said Sutton "pokes the bear" and becomes "her own worst enemy."
As Sutton spoke about the drama with Kyle Richards, she said it was bothered by Erika calling her a "liability as a friend." Sutton found Erika's use of the word both "ironic" and "hypocritical," saying Erika takes "no accountability." Even though she didn't indicate which case it was for, Sutton also clarified that she was asked to be a third-party witness.
"Here's what bothers me. There's a woman in this group that put us all in a bad position, and y'all don't want to talk about it," Sutton continued. "All you do is defend her."
getty (2) Sutton Stracke and Erika Girardi
While the drama was between Sutton and Erika throughout the majority of the episode, things eventually shifted as everyone gathered for Lisa's Rinna Beauty party.
The group initially addressed what Erika meant by her calling Sutton a liability, which she clarified as her indicating Sutton was a "hindrance" that blocks Garcelle's inability from drawing closer to everyone. But Erika eventually turned the tables to focus on comments Garcelle previously made about her drinking habits. She claimed that Garcelle "tried to push" the narrative that she has a "drinking problem," to which the actress admitted to believing because "there were so many instances" where it appeared to be the case.
"Excuse me," Erika began. "You know exactly what I've been going through and I told you straight up what happened. But you tried to push that false narrative that I had a problem."
Defending her previous comments, Garcelle said, "No, no, no. What I did, Erika, is that I said you need to figure out your medicine and drink ratio. That's what I said."
After Erika claimed she found a balance between the two, she asked Garcelle, "Are you trying to get over or are you trying to helpful?"
Paul Archuleta/Getty; Frazer Harrison/Getty Erika Girardi; Garcelle Beauvais
"That's how I felt," Garcelle said. "And when I had drinks with you, I said I was worried about you."
Erika then said Garcelle "would be the last one to know" if she actually had a drinking problem, pointing out who she is closest with in the friend group. "It felt as if you went to different people in this group and talked about, 'Does Erika have a problem?'" she said.
Garcelle then explained that she brought the topic up in conversation with those she met with, leading Erika to wonder about the actress' motives.
"But is that to make Erika look bad or is that out of genuine concern?" asked Erika as Garcelle responded, "Erika, I don't have to make you look bad. You can do that on your own."
Erika hit back: "And you can make yourself look like a liar right now."
Tommy Garcia/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty The cast of RHOBH
Continuing, Erika suggested that Garcelle had an "ulterior motive" in sharing her concerns about the singer's drinking habits. But Garcelle said that Erika having a problem "doesn't change my life in any way, good or bad."
"And it shouldn't, or anybody else's. And it's my life to destroy or build," Erika said.
Garcelle replied, "Then destroy it."
Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo.