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'American Idol' finalist Jaered Andrews remanded for trial

By Wade Paulsen, 03/18/2003 

In our previous story about the arrest of 25-year-old Jaered Andrews, a finalist on American Idol who was abruptly kicked off the show, apparently due to his role in a beating death, we noted that Jaered had a pre-trial hearing coming up on March 7. The Associated Press reports that the judge was apparently no more sympathetic to Jaered's case than the producers of American Idol were, because Jaered was ordered to stand trial on assault charges.

As the previous story described the case, Jaered and his friends went out to celebrate his advance into the American Idol semi-finals. While at the bar, Jaered and his posse got into an argument with Thomas Blakeley, 39. The argument escalated as the parties left the bar, ending with Jaered allegedly punching Blakeley, who hit his head on the pavement. One of Jaered's friends allegedly continued to hit Blakeley in the head, and Blakeley never regained consciousness before being pronounced dead. Jaered was charged with assault, and his posse-mate was charged with aggravated assault. Although Jaered eventually earned a place in the American Idol finals, he was immediately disqualified without comment by the show's producers.

We hope future American Idol semifinalists find methods of expressing their joy that borrow more from The Sound of Music and less from A Clockwork Orange.

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