Nigel Lythgoe: TV executive and talent show judge faces a new sexual assault lawsuit

  • Written by Yasmine Ruffo
  • Culture correspondent

British television executive Nigel Lithgow has been charged with sexual assault and battery in a new lawsuit.

An unnamed woman accused Lithgow, a former judge on US TV show So You Think You Can Dance, of “groping her all over” after pinning her to a wall.

This is the fourth lawsuit against the 74-year-old in recent months, including one brought by American singer Paula Abdul.

He has denied all previous accusations and his representatives have not commented to the American media on the latest lawsuit.

The BBC has contacted his representatives for a response.

Court documents filed in Los Angeles allege that the woman felt “horribly violated” and suffered “severe emotional and psychological distress” after the alleged assault in 2018.

“Mr. Lithgow allegedly forced himself on our client during what was supposed to be a business meeting and then ended their relationship when she did not comply,” her attorney, Melissa Eubanks, said.

The case comes after two former contestants on All American Girl, on which Lithgow was a producer, filed a lawsuit against him last January over alleged sexual assault.

Meanwhile, Abdul claimed the TV mogul assaulted her while they were working together on American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance.

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Paula Abdul claims Nigel Lithgow (above left) first assaulted her during an early season of American Idol

In his response to Abdul, submitted this week and published by US media, he described the singer as “a well-documented fabulist with a long history of telling wild stories unconnected with reality, primarily intended to attract attention and make Abdul appear.” “To be a victim of terrible misfortune.”

He vehemently denied her allegations, calling them “false, vile, intolerable and life-changing” and calling them “the worst form of character assassination”.

Lythgoe was an executive producer of Pop Idol and American Idol and also served as an on-screen judge on Popstars in the UK as well as So You Think You Can Dance in the US.

He resigned from So You Think You Can Dance “with a heavy heart” in January.

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