The Louisiana State University Police Department has arrested Lane Hardy, winner of the 17th season of “American Idol” after the singer was accused of wiretapping a student’s room with a tape recorder.
Hardy, 21, was booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Jail for violating 15:1303 – intercepting and exposing wired, electronic or verbal communications. If convicted, he could face a fine of up to $10,000 or a prison sentence of two to 10 years.
The student told the police that she discovered the device on April 7 and did a Google search to find that it was an activated voice recorder. The student told the police that she believed Hardy put the bug there.
Hardy is a Louisiana native and lives in Livingston Parish. He is not an LSU student.
The “Idol” star confirmed the existence of an arrest warrant for him In a post on Facebook Thursday, avoiding details but citing an incident of a “sensitive nature” that occurred on the LSU campus.
“Earlier today, I received a warrant for the allegations made against me and was cooperating fully with the Louisiana State University Police Department,” Hardy wrote. “I understand that my career has pushed me into the public spotlight, and I wholeheartedly embrace that because my entire world belongs to my music and my fans.”
“However, given the sensitive nature of this allegation, I humbly request privacy at this time,” he continued.
“I am very respectful of the law and will assist in their investigation as needed moving forward,” he said.
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In a statement to USA TODAY, Hardy’s attorney, C. Frank Holthus, said, “Mr. Hardy received a warrant earlier today and has been, and will continue to be, fully cooperating with the Louisiana State University Police Department on this matter.”
University representative Ernie Ballard also confirmed the “active investigation” to USA TODAY.
Hardy rose to fame after winning “American Idol” in 2019. It marked the end of a long road in the singing competition for the singer, Livingston, Louisiana, who previously participated in the show in 2018 but was eliminated from the top 50.
He hadn’t intended to make another attempt for “Idol” in 2019, but was persuaded to sing to the judges again when he accompanied his girlfriend Ashton Gill on guitar to her audition. While Jill didn’t make it to Hollywood, Hardy took his golden ticket all the way to victory, winning fans young and old with his throwback song choices and Elvis Presley-like egos.
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“I hesitated to take the golden ticket (to Hollywood), and then knew I’d give it another try and see how far I can get,” Hardy told USA TODAY after his win. “All season long I had other thoughts about it because it was really hard, but I kept doing what I was doing; I work myself every day and keep on doing it.”
Contributing: Patrick Ryan, USA TODAY
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