In her filing, obtained by E! News, Abdul, 61, details two incidents of alleged sexual assault by Lythgoe, 74. The first allegedly occurred during one of American Idol‘s initial seasons, while Abdul and Lythgoe were on the road for the show’s regional auditions. It states that while the two were inside a hotel elevator, the producer groped the singer and kissed her without her consent.
Abdul says that she attempted to push him away and tell him his behavior was not acceptable and that she soon ran out and told one of her reps about the incident but “ultimately decided not to take action for fear that Lythgoe would have her fired from American Idol.”
Abdul also alleges in her lawsuit that Lythgoe sexually assaulted her again years later, around the time she worked as one of his co-judges on So You Think You Can Dance, a reality dance competition series he co-created.
The singer, who starred on the show in that capacity between 2015 and 2016, says in her filing that he had invited her to dinner at his home “to discuss other opportunities for the two to work together” and that she accepted the invitation. Abdul alleges that toward the end of the evening, Lythgoe forced himself on top of her while she was seated on his couch and “attempted to kiss her while proclaiming that the two would make an excellent ‘power couple.'”
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