‘American Idol’ Finalist Caleb Kennedy Arrested For DUI In Fatal Car Accident

The 17-year-old former 'American Idol' contestant was just arrested and charged with felony DUI after he allegedly drove his vehicle into a building and killed a man.

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Image Credit: Spartanburg County Detention Center

Former American Idol contestant Caleb Kennedy, who competed on the show in 2021, was arrested and charged with a felony DUI on Feb. 8 after allegedly crashing his truck into a building in South Carolina, killing one man who was inside. “A vehicle driven by Caleb Andrew Kennedy ran into a workshop behind a home at 12:33 p.m. in the 200 block of W. Murph Road just 3 miles south of Pacolet,” Fire Chief for the Pacolet, South Carolina Fire Station told HollywoodLife in a statement. “The victim inside of the workshop, 54-year-old Larry Duane Parris, was taken to the hospital and later died from the injuries he sustained.”

Caleb Kennedy
Caleb Kennedy mug shot (Spartanburg County Detention Center).

Caleb was a Top 5 finalist for American Idol in May 2021, when it was announced that he would be stepping away from the competition after a controversial video of him circulated online. “Hey y’all, this is gonna be a bit of a surprise, but I am no longer gonna be on American Idol,” Caleb tweeted. “There was a video that surfaced on the internet and it displayed actions that were not meant to be taken in any way. I was younger and did not think about the actions, but that’s not an excuse.”

 

The video in question allegedly showed Caleb with a friend wearing what appeared to be a Ku Klux Klan hood. “I wanna say sorry to all my fans and everyone who I have let down,” Caleb tweeted at the time. “I’ll be taking a little time off social media to better myself, but saying that, I know this has hurt and disappointed a lot of people and made people lose respect for me. I’m so sorry! I pray that I can one day regain your trust in who I am and have your respect!”

According to Caleb’s mother, Anita Guy, the video was taken when he was 12. She told the Herald-Journal, “I hate this has happened and how Caleb is being portrayed by people online. This video was taken after Caleb had watched the movie ‘The Strangers: Prey at Night‘ and they were imitating those characters. It had nothing to do with the Ku Klux Klan, but I know that’s how it looks. Caleb doesn’t have a racist bone in his body. He loves everyone and has friends of all races.”

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