Paula Abdul Alleges Sexual Assault: Lawsuit against 'American Idol' Producer Nigel Lythgoe

Paula Abdul Alleges Sexual Assault: Lawsuit against 'American Idol' Producer Nigel Lythgoe

Paula Abdul, American Idol, Nigel Lythgoe, sexual assault, harassment, gender violence, negligence, lawsuit, allegations, lawsuit, co-defendants, compensatory discrimination, emotional distress, justice, California Sexual Abuse and Cover Up Accountability Act

In a shocking revelation, Grammy-winning entertainer Paula Abdul has come forward with allegations of sexual assault against Nigel Lythgoe, the executive producer of hit shows like "American Idol" and "So You Think You Can Dance." Abdul filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles County Superior Court on Friday, accusing Lythgoe of sexual assault, harassment, gender violence, and negligence.

The lawsuit outlines two separate incidents that Abdul claims occurred in the early 2000s and in 2015. According to the complaint, during regional auditions for "American Idol," Lythgoe allegedly shoved Abdul against a wall in an elevator, groped her, and kissed her without consent. Abdul tried to push him away and made it clear that his behavior was unacceptable.

In the second incident, Abdul alleges that while attending a business dinner at Lythgoe's home in 2015, he forced himself on top of her and attempted to kiss her. Abdul firmly rejected his advances, emphasizing that she had believed the meeting was strictly professional.

Abdul explains that she did not report either incident at the time due to fear of professional retaliation. Additionally, she claims to have witnessed Lythgoe assaulting her assistant in a separate incident in 2015.

Lythgoe responded to the allegations, stating that they are "false" and "deeply offensive." He expressed shock and sadness, promising to fight against what he called an "appalling smear" with all his might.

Abdul's lawsuit names 19 Entertainment Inc., FremantleMedia North America Inc., American Idol Productions Inc., and Dance Nation Productions Inc. as co-defendants. She accuses them of gender violence, sexual harassment, negligence, and of having allowed Lythgoe's behavior by failing to oversee him. Abdul is seeking unspecified punitive damages.

The lawsuit also highlights Abdul's alleged experience of compensatory discrimination while working on "American Idol" compared to her male counterparts. She claims to have been the target of constant taunts, bullying, humiliation, and harassment.

As a result of these incidents, Abdul states that she has suffered severe emotional distress, fear, anxiety, humiliation, and other physical and emotional injuries. Her suit emphasizes that these injuries are substantial, continuing, and permanent.

Abdul's lawyer, Douglas L. Johnson, released a statement affirming Abdul's determination to seek justice. He acknowledges the difficulty of her decision and adds that Abdul stands in solidarity with other survivors who have faced similar situations.

Abdul's lawsuit was filed under California's Sexual Abuse and Cover Up Accountability Act, which allows claims of damages resulting from sexual assault that occurred outside the statute of limitations to be filed within a specific time frame.

Paula Abdul's brave step in speaking out against the alleged sexual assault has brought attention to an issue that needs to be addressed. The case will now progress through the legal system, with Abdul seeking justice and accountability for the alleged actions of Nigel Lythgoe and the organizations involved.

News Agencies

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