Vanderpump Rules Cheating Drama: Everything to Know

Vanderpump Rules star Tom Sandoval has been making headlines following accusations he cheated on his longtime girlfriend Ariana Madix with their costar Raquel Leviss.

While news of the TomTom restaurant co-owner’s affair with Leviss broke on March 3, sources told PEOPLE that the affair had been going on for six months, leaving Madix “blindsided” and “devastated” by the revelation.

The scandal has sparked reactions from other stars of the Bravo series, including Leviss’s ex- fiancé James Kennedy, Lala Kent and Scheana Shay. Bravo boss Andy Cohen also chimed in during an episode of his SiriusXM radio show on March 6.

Not only did he confirm that the Vanderpump Rules reunion show would be filming less than two weeks after the news broke, he also teased the drama that is expected to unfold, saying, “This is a reunion that’s going to be… I’m girding my loins.”

As the cheating scandal continues to make headlines, Vanderpump Rules is currently airing new episodes — which Cohen said will be viewed very differently now that fans know the affair was happening behind the scenes.

Here’s everything to know about the Vanderpump Rules cheating drama, including the status of Sandoval and Madix’s relationship.

Who are Tom Sandoval, Ariana Madix and Raquel Leviss?

Sandoval has been a cast member on Vanderpump Rules since the show premiered on Bravo in January 2013. He went from bartender at SUR to co-owner of TomTom, which he operates with Ken Todd, Lisa Vanderpump and Tom Schwartz. He’s also involved in a men’s cosmetics venture, acts and is the lead singer of Tom Sandoval & the Most Extras.

Madix has been a cast member on Vanderpump Rules since season 2 premiered in November 2013. Prior to joining, she worked as a bartender at Vanderpump’s Beverly Hills restaurant Villa Blanca before she was transferred to SUR. There, she became co-workers and castmates with the Vanderpump Rules crew. Outside of the reality show, she holds several film acting credits to her name.

Leviss first appeared on Vanderpump Rules when Kennedy introduced her as his girlfriend during a season 5 episode in November 2016. The two revealed they got engaged as filming for season 9 began in May 2021. However, two months after their proposal aired in October 2021, they announced they had split.

When did Tom Sandoval and Ariana Madix start dating?

Tom Sandoval and Ariana Madix.
Robin L Marshall/Getty

While it’s unclear exactly when Sandoval and Madix first met during their time serving drinks at Villa Blanca, viewers first saw them connect when she joined the season 2 cast of Vanderpump Rules during the summer of 2013.

The pair later confirmed their relationship at the Vanderpump Rules season 2 reunion in 2014. Earlier in the season, Sandoval’s then-girlfriend Kristen Doute accused him of cheating on her with Madix, which both Sandoval and Madix denied — though they did eventually acknowledge they’d shared a kiss.

Did Tom Sandoval cheat on Ariana Madix?

Amanda Edwards/Getty; Emma McIntyre/WireImage; Charles Sykes/Bravo/Getty

A source told PEOPLE that Madix found out about Sandoval’s affair with Leviss in early March 2023. “They had been having problems for a while, but this was the final straw for Ariana,” the insider said. “She put up with a lot over the years, but she won’t sit back and be disrespected this way.”

“This has been going on for upwards of six months — all the while, Tom was sleeping next to Ariana in bed,” one insider told PEOPLE. “She was completely blindsided by this; devastated doesn’t even scratch the surface of how she feels.”

“This is someone she thought she knew; someone she planned to spend the rest of her life with. You can’t even put into words that betrayal,” the source added.

Meanwhile, eagle-eyed fans have pointed out on TikTok that Sandoval and Leviss have been wearing matching lightning bolt necklaces lately. Leviss was pictured sporting the chain at BravoCon in October 2022, while Sandoval was seen wearing the necklace at the House of Barrie opening in October 2022 — and most recently at the Vanderpump Rules season 10 premiere on Feb. 7.

How did Ariana Madix find out about Tom Sandoval’s affair with Raquel Leviss?

Sources tell PEOPLE that Madix first learned of the affair on March 1 when she supported Sandoval and his band during a performance in Los Angeles. According to the source, Madix discovered a selfie video sexual in nature from Leviss on his phone as well as a “history of inappropriate texts.”

“Ariana had been there for Raquel when she went through her split with James [Kennedy]. She thought they were friends,” a second source told PEOPLE. “This isn’t something you do to a friend.”

Did Tom Sandoval and Ariana Madix break up?

Tom Sandoval and Ariana Madix.

On March 3, PEOPLE confirmed that Sandoval and Madix broke up after nine years together. According to a source, Sandoval’s alleged affair with Leviss led to the split.

“They had been having problems for a while, but this was the final straw for Ariana,” the insider said. “She put up with a lot over the years, but she won’t sit back and be disrespected this way.”

Despite their split, Sandoval has yet to move out of his and Madix’s home. Photographs were captured of the Vanderpump Rules star loading up his car before heading to a concert his band Tom Sandoval & the Most Extras played later that night in Anaheim, California.

Sandoval and Leviss have not yet responded to the allegations. (TMZ was the first to report the news.)

Has Tom Sandoval publicly commented on the cheating allegations?

On March 4, Sandoval broke his silence on the cheating scandal. He shared a statement on Instagram about his split from Madix, asking fans to direct their anger away from his loved ones, including castmate, friend and business partner Schwartz.

“Hey, I fully understand and deserve ur anger and disappointment towards me, but please leave Schwartz my friends and family out of this situation…,” Sandoval wrote, noting that Schwartz “specifically only found out about this very recently, and most definitely did not condone my actions.”

“This was a very personal thing,” Sandoval stated.

He also asked fans to ease up on the negative comments being blasted on his bar and cocktail lounges, TomTom and Schwartz & Sandy’s.

“Schwartz & Sandy’s might have my name on it, but also there are 3 other partners and 20 employees, who especially rely on the restaurant for income for them and their families,” he said. “Just like TomTom, I’m a small part of a much bigger thing. Please direct ur anger towards me and not them. They did nothing wrong.”

Sandoval went on to apologize to his partners and his employees who “have to suffer for my actions,” adding that he will be removing himself temporarily from the businesses.

“I will be taking a step back & taking a hiatus out of respect for my employees & partners,” he said. “I need some time to address everything else.” He signed the note: “Sorry for everything.”

Will the cheating scandal be featured on Vanderpump Rules season 10?

Amanda Edwards/Getty

Season 10 will likely include the affair as an insider shared with PEOPLE on March 3 that “cameras are rolling right now.” A production source also shared that Bravo and production company Evolution began filming again to follow the fallout of the cheating scandal.

That same day, costar Kennedy (who was engaged to Leviss) posted a screenshot of the first article about the cheating scandal, commenting, “Hope you all feel as sick as I do. This explains everything.”

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Vanderpump Rules airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo.

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