TV3 'truly sorry' over X Factor interview

Shae Brider. Photo NZ Herald
Shae Brider. Photo NZ Herald
It is unclear whether convicted killer Shae Brider has progressed to the next round of X Factor.

The X Factor NZ last night issued an on-air apology for featuring convicted killer Shae Brider's audition, traumatising the family of his victim.

In the show's opening segment, host Dominic Bowden appeared in a pre-recorded message apologising "unreservedly" for any offence caused.

"We acknowledge that Shae's interview on the show was only one side of the story and did not allow for the victim's family to tell their side and for that, we at TV3 unreservedly apologise for any hurt or distress that this has caused the family," Bowden said.

"It was never our intention to cause offence and for that we are truly sorry."

Brider, 29, was sentenced to eight and a-half years' jail for his part, alongside three others, in the 2004 killing of 16-year-old Jeremy Frew and the assaults on three other men the same night in Wanganui.

Last Tuesday night, TV3 screened his audition featuring a back-story segment where he revealed an incomplete and misleading version of events. Some of Jeremy's family were watching the show unaware Brider would appear.

In the back story, he said: "I met some dudes and we went to a bonfire. There was a commotion with two of them and one of them stabbed the other one and he ended up passing away."

Brider did not appear on last night's episode and it was unclear whether he made it through to the next stage.

His Facebook profile picture showed him with four other X Factor contestants, including Johnny Searle and Matt Heard who were ousted last night.

Meanwhile, Donna Travers -- Jeremy Frew's mother, who relocated to Australia after he was killed -- said last night's apology was unlikely to "repair the damage" that had been done.

Ms Travers complained to TV3 for airing the segment that downplayed Brider's involvement and failed to mention the three other people the group assaulted.

"The apology's one thing but it's not going to repair the damage that's been done," she said.

"I don't think anybody understands, apart from my family, what this has done to us. We've had 10 years to try and live our lives and they took it away in one night."

She previously said she believed Brider deserved a second chance after serving his sentence, but producers should have ensured the facts were correct.

Ms Travers said she was yet to watch last night's apology.

- New Zealand Herald

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