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"American Idol" Top 36 -- Only One Ex-Con?

2/14/2009 8:15 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

It seems as though you can count on every group of fresh-faced "American Idol" finalists to harbor at least a few hardened criminals. But surprisingly, it looks like only one of this year's Top 36 has spent time in the slammer.

American Idol

Jessica Langseth, a singer from Minneapolis, was busted a few years back on DUI. She pled guilty, spent four days in jail and was put on probation for two years -- more than enough time to master the art of bare-knuckled combat. Jessica's probation was cut short and she officially became a free woman last December.

Let's just hope there aren't any sharpened toothbrushes lying around the set. You know, for Simon's sake.

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I wish TMZ would lay off the Idol contestants. These are young people who, like many others, may have made some poor choices in the past, but are trying to build a career in their chosen field. Sort of like the young people who write for TMZ-hoping some day to move on to a respectable career in writing.

2015 days ago


Come to Minnesota and one of the first things any outsider notices is how many liquor stores and bars we have here... many right inside the neighborhood. Coming from the "Bible Belt", within a "dry county" no less, it is was a serious culture shock for me.

I guess it is the cold. It is unbelievably cold for about 6 months out of the year here. I've seen -30 with -45 windchill where the moisture in your eyes freezes on your lashes by the time you walk from parking lot to the door. I've seen weeks of the temp hovering around 0 and we go months without getting above freezing.

Almost everyone drinks to keep from freezing to death. They drink a lot... they drink all the time... and they are stupid and they drive while drinking. I'm surprised their aren't more drunk driving fatalities because it seems like the majority drive impaired and don't even give it a second thought. All the "higher ups" at my company, highly successful business men, get ripped at lunch, almost daily, and all of them seem to have a DUI or two... and it isn't a big deal around here! Hell, I've smelled whiskey on the President's breath at 8 in the morning when he walks in the door.

Between my accent, the fact that I hate the taste of alcohol, and can smell a drop of it a mile away... I really don't blend very well.

Someone having a DUI from Minnesota is not startling news. She is lucky she wasn't one of the many who killed herself drinking. Minnesota has the highest rate of young adult deaths from alcohol poisoning. The college sits on the river and there are a fair share that end up wondering off into it every year, some simply get tired walking home and lay down and freeze to death, and then there are always the ones who do it up big time in a fiery car wreck. But hey, drinking seems to be the thing to do here.

Go figure.

2015 days ago


Is this girl still in the Top 36? My question is... They Got rid of one girl.... with no criminal history..... why the hell would they keep this one?? This show is rigged... Not even worth watching the show anymore.... whoever they want to win will actually win... they should just get rid of the whole voting thing... and just call it smacked ass Judges Idol. Because in the end... that is what it comes down to. And why the hell are the execs not making any comments to any of this crap? They are probably afraid of having too many different excuses, to make the public know it is all fake!!!

2015 days ago

marie in D.C.    

So none of you jack asses has NEVER-EVER got behind the wheel after a drink or two, or three? You had better check yourself before you................ Especially you Harvey, c'mon I thought you were an Attorney. My pile is bigger than yours, and you know what I am speaking about.......

2015 days ago


So what!!!! She got a DUI. Does that exclude her from being a productive citizen in the great U.S.A? Who gives a rats ass?One of the judges,Paula has fought bulemia and all kinds of other 'stuff'.....Lets boycott her being one of the Idol judges..

2015 days ago


If Barack Obama can smoke dope and become President and Timothy Geitner can avoide paying taxes and become Treasury Secretary of the U.S., then, I think this unknown, struggling, hardworking female musician who has taken the hard knocks of life and not even used her more famous brother's stage name to give herself some kind of "advantage", should be given a succeed. Where are we living anyway--the U.S. or Nazi Germany where everybody tells on everybody else? Yeah. Let's slam someone before they can even get up on their knees. What a bunch of blood thirsty vampires most of you losers have become. Jessica Simpson's too fat. Brad and Angelina have split. Mayer is not that into Anniston. You guys always take the bloody bait. Pathetic. You're so starved you now have to go for small fish. You, too, have shrunk! Barf!

2015 days ago


Just thinkin'. How could we dare let Martha Stewart back on the air after her months in jail for something far worse--and Paris Hilton--how could she still be famous after her run-ins with the law-- If we didn't, there would be no point in getting up after you fall. "There will be gnashing of teeth."

2015 days ago


so what nobody has ever got introuble,,,tmz is trying to knock her down even before she gets a chance,,,great job tmz,you just spoiled her chance and now filled it with negitive ,what did she do to you,,,nothing,,,,they better not let her go,,,what kind of message does it send ,you cant make a mistake ,,,and get a second chance,,,leave all the contestent alone now,,,,just let the fans vote

2015 days ago

Interracial facial    

Ex Cons? I was wondering where all the straight guys were? What happened to straight singing America? Did Simon and friends ban breeders from the show?

2014 days ago


Jonny won a Grammy for his last album "Turn Around". Yes, he sings more Gospel/R&B stuff, but he sings some of the older stuff every now and then. Jonny never really was "famous", he only got radio play on top 40 stations for "Lie To Me".

As for Jessica, yeah, she screwed up, but that hardly makes her an ex-con. I think she could make it to the top 10.

2013 days ago
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