UPDATE: Taylor Swift set to testify in her sexual assault case — here’s all the latest information
The DJ claims he only ‘touched her ribs’
by Amanda Ross
Jurors have been selected in the Taylor Swift sexual assault-defamation suit and countersuit. A jury of eight, six women and two men, were chosen late Tuesday night after a lengthy selection process.
While phones or any other electronic devices are banned from the Denver courtroom, reporters and spectators have been tweeting updates during trial recesses, including court sketches depicting Swift and her mother Andrea, both of whom are expected to testify in coming hours or days.
Opening statements have already finished and David Mueller, the former DJ accusing Swift of defamation, is undergoing questioning and cross-examination by both counsel teams.
— Taylor Swift Facts (@blessedswifty) August 8, 2017
Some background information
The dueling cases are centered around a sexual assault accusation by Swift. The pop star claims former radio DJ David Mueller groped her ass under her skirt while posing for a pre-concert photo in 2013, pictured below.
Swift reported the alleged assault to the station manager, who subsequently fired Mueller. Now, Mueller is suing Swift for defamation, claiming it was a false accusation that lead to his dismissal. He seeks at least $3 million in damages.
Meanwhile, Taylor Swift is counter-suing for sexual assault and battery in civil court, seeking $1 in damages as a symbolic restitution.
Here’s what Mueller claims
Mueller told jurors he and Swift touched hands and arms during the brief photo, relenting that it’s possible he might have touched her “rib cage, or rib, or ribs.” NBC reports that when jurors were shown the photo in question by Mueller’s lawyer, Gabriel McFarland, several started at the photo for a long period of time while others glanced back and forth at the picture and McFarland as he spoke.
Look at the photo in question
The pre-concert photo is at the crux of the trial. Swift’s lawyers have called it “damning” proof of assault, while Mueller’s team also see it as vindicating.
— Colorado Family Law (@KTarrinEsq) August 7, 2017
“If you look at that photograph, his hand is not underneath Miss Swift’s skirt, and her skirt is not rumpled in any fashion,” McFarland said.
Swift says she’s certain about what happened
After the alleged incident. Mueller testified that one of his station bosses claimed to groped Swift himself. “He told me he had his hands on her butt,” Mueller said. “I thought he was just telling me one of his stories.”
But while cross-examined by Swift’s attorneys, Mueller was questioned about why, if someone else bragged about assaulting Swift, he didn’t tell the boss who was investigating his own accusation. He couldn’t explain.
Meanwhile, Swift maintains she is positive it was Mueller who groped her, a sentiment echoed by her lawyer Douglas Baldridge in his opening statement. Baldridge rhetorically asked the jury what possible reason Swift would have to lie about the assault.
“That’s the one and only story we have to tell you,” Balridge said. “Mr. Mueller grabbed her rear end.”
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