Cowell Regrets Suicide of Idol Contestant
But doubts producers shrugged off Abdul's protests about audition
By Rebecca Smith Hurd,  Newser User
Posted Dec 18, 2008 1:31 PM CST

(Newser) – Simon Cowell says he regrets not realizing how troubled the American Idol contestant who killed herself outside judge Paula Abdul’s home last month was, but refutes Abdul’s claim that she begged producers to keep the obsessed Paula Goodspeed off the show. “I wish we could have spent time trying to help her,” Cowell tells the Daily Mail. “We genuinely didn’t know.”

Abdul maintains colleagues ignored her warnings. “I said, ‘This girl is a stalker of mine and please do not let her in.’ Everyone knew, I mean I was shaking, and they thought this would be for entertainment value.” Counters Cowell: “Talking about the producers in the way they have been portrayed [in the media] is unfair. These aren’t bad people. All they want to do is make a successful show.”