‘American Idol’ Producer Nigel Lythgoe Faces New Sexual Assault Suit

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Leena Nasir Entertainment Reporter
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A woman accused “American Idol” producer Nigel Lythgoe of sexual assault in a lawsuit filed Saturday, the third such allegation against him in less than two months.

“What should have been a quick two-minute ride ended up being a ten-to-fifteen minute sexual assault and battery in which plaintiff was trapped in Lythgoe’s vehicle,” the documents allege, according to Deadline. “Lythgoe’s sexual assault and battery of plaintiff left her feeling horribly violated, shocked, guilty, humiliated, and embarrassed. Such mental anguish and emotional distress were severe and lasting to this day.”

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The plaintiff, referred to as “Jane Doe,” alleged that she met the former “So You Think You Can Dance” judge by chance at a Beverly Hills hotel bar in Feb. 2016. Doe said she was with her daughter and two friends at the time. Doe said she was under the assumption she was going for a very short drive, but that Lythgoe’s driver ignored her wishes and drove the two of them to Hollywood Hills instead and that she was attacked during the car ride, according to Deadline.

Doe hired attorney Melissa Eubanks from boutique entertainment law firm Johnson & Johnson and is suing for unspecified damages, the outlet notes.

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“It is troubling to hear of yet another alleged incident of a woman being taken advantage of and abused by a prominent public figure,” Eubanks told Deadline in a statement. “We are proud to represent Jane Doe and humbled by her courage, and the courage of many other women, to come forward with her story in hopes of ending such egregious misconduct by persons of fame, celebrity, influence, and power.”

Eubanks and her colleagues Neville L. Johnson and Douglas L. Johnson also represent Paula Abdul in the sexual assault and battery suit she brought against Lythgoe in December. Abdul claims that Lythgoe sexually assaulted her twice during her time on set with him.

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“For years, Abdul has remained silent about the sexual assaults and harassment she experienced on account of Lythgoe, due to fear of speaking out against one of the most well-known producers of television competition shows who could easily break her career as a television personality, and of being ostracized and blackballed by an industry that had a pattern of protecting powerful men and silencing survivors of sexual assault and harassment,” her lawsuit states, according to Deadline.

Shortly after Abdul came forward with her claims against Lythgoe, a separate suite from a different Jane Doe was filed, making Saturday’s filing the third sexual assault charge filed against the famous producer and reality game show judge since December.

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Lythgoe addressed Abdul’s claims by describing her as “erratic” and her allegations as “false” and “deeply offensive to me and to everything I stand for.” (RELATED: Woman Sues T.I. For Alleged Sexual Assault, Claims His Wife Was In On The Plot: REPORT)

He has not yet publicly commented on the two Jane Doe lawsuits.